A friend of mine maintains that Ernest Hemingway’s suicide stemmed from the author’s awareness of having entered the realms of self-parody. Even during his lifetime, Hemingway’s name was synonymous with the terse, minimal prose style he pioneered.
Now, nearly 100 years after Ernest first ventured to the Italian Front, the Hemingway App purports to instruct writers on how to imitate Hemingway’s trademark bluntness. And it actually does a pretty good job.
The app analyzes blocks of text and assigns them a numeric grade based on their readability. A grade of “2” denotes easy readability; grades of “9” and upwards come equipped with suggestions for improvement. The app also highlights and advocates for the removal of difficult-to-read sentences, adverbs, obtuse phrases and instances of passive voice.
Whether or not you’re a Hemingway fan, the app offers great, barebones editing tools to tighten your prose. For anecdotes about Pamplona, you’ll have to stick to the novels.