Having your own words processed and restated can help you improve your thinking and your writing. That’s one reason why talking with someone about your ideas can help you clarify your thoughts. ChatGPT is certainly no replacement for a knowledgable friend or colleague, but can can definitely help you remix your writing so you can see it anew.
Here is some advice if you’re stuck writing a nearly-finished paper: Paste the whole thing into ChatGPT and ask ChatGPT questions like this.
– to summarise the whole paper for you
– to state the main argument (do you agree?)
– to write an abstract
– to write a conclusion
– to explain why this paper is important (for society? for the future? for the field?)
– to write an article in the style of Wired Magazine about the paper
– to write an interview with the author of the paper about its contents for the New York Times
– to write a hate piece about the paper for Fox News
– to write a series of tweets promoting the paper
– to write a reply to one of those tweets criticising the paper
– to write a Reddit post about the paper etc.
– to explain the paper as though to an 8 year old
– to write a peer review of the paper
– to write a cover letter to the editor of [whatever journal] explaining why the paper will be of interest to the journal and what its strengths are
– …..and what else can you think of?
Many if not most of the results will be silly or wrong, of course. But some will be interesting, or make you see something you maybe didn’t consider, or help you see what your main point really is (or isn’t). If it writes you an abstract or conclusion you actually disagree with or that focuses on something you hadn’t expected, reread the paper – maybe your real argument isn’t as clear as you hoped?
I’m not suggesting you copy and paste the text ChatGPT generates into your paper. I’m suggesting that you use it as a remix engine to see what else your paper might be, to respark your inspiration, and to make yourself laugh and enjoy yourself. That’ll make finishing to write the paper much more fun!
You’ll have to paste the text in a 1000 words at a time or so as there is a word limit for each “bit” of text it can process. Tell ChatGPT “This is part 1 of of a paper titled “TITLE OF PAPER”, and then “Here is part 2” and so on.
After all this, revise your paper!
I’ve used ChatGPT as a sounding board for a project description, “reword this for clarity in academic voice”, was the prompt. It worked well to help me edit the short piece of about 200 words (when I was a bit blocked and bored tbh).
I’m wary of giving ChatGPT or other similar systems more of my words, ie a nearly finished paper, even in chunks. Do you see any issues or pitfalls with this?