Oct. 21, 2009

A “Strangler” Word Cloud


Just for kicks, courtesy of Wordle.net, here is the text of The Strangler displayed as a word cloud, a visual representation of the most frequently used words in the novel. Not sure how much this tells you, really. The characters’ names dominate, as you might expect. Other prominent topics show up as well: Boston, cops/police, brother. The surprise is that the F-word appears, and not once but twice, including the all-important adjectival or gerund form, fuckin’. I know some authors shy away from profanity even in books that are violent or sexually graphic or otherwise aimed at adults. But to me it seems phony to portray street thugs speaking the Queen’s English, and perverse to blush at using a dirty word but not at lurid descriptions of gory violence. Even so, I hadn’t realized I used the word that much.

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