Sunday, April 09, 2006

My Writing is Ridiculous

Courtesy of Georganna Hancock from Writer's Edge, who put her own test results on her blog, here's my readability test results.

Apparently I write (at least on my blog) for fifth graders (Flesch-Kincaid Grade) and am not even close to post graduate level of writing (Gunning Fog Index) but at the bottom of most popular novels. I am, however, pretty good according to the Flesch Reading Ease test.

The following table contains the readability results for All Kinds of Writing current first page.
Reading Level Results:
Summary                                          Value

Total sentences 316

Total words 1922

Average words per Sentence 6.08

Words with 1 Syllable 1156

Words with 2 Syllables 496

Words with 3 Syllables 172

Words with 4 or more Syllables 98

Percentage of word with three or more syllables 14.05%

Average Syllables per Word 1.59

Gunning Fog Index 8.05

Flesch Reading Ease 66.15

Flesch-Kincaid Grade 5.54

If you want to try, here's the link for the Readability Test

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Jean said...

Cool. I saved it to my favorites to run a periodic check.

Melly said...

Georganna has so many of these really helpful links and awesome posts. Most recommended if you liked this.
I should probably do periodic checks as well - good idea.

Deborah said...

I ran across this yesterday or the day before. It's a great tool to have. :)

rdl said...

5th grade? hmm, guess that's why I like yours so much :D

rdl said...

had to tell you mine was 3.6 grade, so i guess you're over my head. :D

Jack Slyde said...

I'm a bit confused, isn't the purpose of any piece of writing (except poetry) to be easily understood?

I would have thought the reading ease result the most important one.

Or am I taking this too seriously?

ME Strauss said...

Readability tests are my business and they are famously inaccurate. Change one or two words here or there and your can kick things up or down two grade levels. Newspapers are written at 6th-8th grade level. Graduate level writing is awful. Ewww.

I wouldn't worry about one of these tests for a second. I've used the same passage on three tests to prove it was 2nd grade to 8th grade.

You can't test readability by machine.

Your writing is wonderful.
End of story. Get your butt to Chicago. I want some wine. :P

Anonymous said...

lol, I'm afraid to run this on my blog. I would be afraid that the server running this test would shut down in disgust.

Bryan D. Catherman said...

This thing is a good tool. The best part about it is how simple it is to put in the URL of other websites, like the New York Times! I've added it to my Writer's Resources page. Thanks!

P.S.> The word count is great too, except that I learn that my posted e-mails from Iraq contain nearly 50,000 words and my blog’s main page contains about a novel’s worth of easy reading words too. Why oh why have I been wasting my words on my blog? I could have written a novel by now!

Melly said...

Deborah, I sometimes also look at the Word readability results, but I can't put my blog there. This sure was interesting.

rdl, LOL! You're too much :)
Now we know why we like each other's blogs...

Jack, ease is good, but ease without showing any intelligence?
And you're right, we're probably taking it too seriously...

Awww, thanks Liz :)
How does August sound?
But really, I had no idea that one word, or very small changes, can have such an effect on the results.

Fred, LOL! But I do doubt you'll make the server shut down.

Bryan, I didn't think of putting other URLs, that's very interesting. I'll try that too. Thanks.
BTW, I sometimes feel the same about the amount of writing I do here. But truth is, it helps me relax and helps me with my other writing, so that's how look at it...

Pat Kirby said...

Hmmm. I wonder how the test looks at cursewords? Hee. Because I got a 4th grade level, but I'm more like PG13 at best.

Jean said...

If you're using one syllable curse words, that's all it knows. Now, if you're using those infamous multi-syllabic twenty dollar curse words, that might up the reading grade level. But seriously, the test doesn't know what the words are. It's all about the numbers.

(I bet Melly knew I'd work that last one in.)

Patry Francis said...

Mine came out really close to yours. Guess I'm writing for 5th graders, too!

Melly said...

Pat, LOL! And like Jean said, this one I believe is all about the numbers - my favourite sentence ever :)

Patry, that makes me feels much better :)

Jennifer said...

3rd Grade. Don't I feel smart :D HA!


Sharon J said...

I always check my flesch score through Word but hadn't heard of Gunning Fog before. Word doesn't give you the number of 1 syllable, 2 syllable etcetera, either. My blog's 4.68 on the flesch scale so yours is positively academic in comparison ;-)

~Sharon J

ME Strauss said...

Hey, Melly,
Yeah sometimes making your sentences shorter can actually make your grade level go UP.

August sounds like fun, but remember that Chicago is HOT during that month. AW, who cares--we'll be in air conditioning drinking wine or near some foundtain. . .

Melly said...

Jennifer, you just know how to make me feel a lot better ;)

Sharon, academic? Why, thank you!
But I doubt that :)

Liz :)
I do hope to make it there in the summer. The plans are still very much vague, but we'll see :)
Oh, and how can shorter make it go up???