There’s a cute website called Wordle which takes any text you upload and turns it into a word cloud. The size of each word in the cloud is based on the frequency with which it appears in the text, the colours and fonts are randomly selected and the results are rather beautiful.
If you use Wordle to analyse your own writing – as I’ve done with all seven of my stories from The String City Mysteries – you’ll find the clouds show up any minor obsessions you may have with vocabulary. As you’ll see in the image below, my own predilection appears to be with the word ‘like’. I put this down to the large number of similes my gumshoe narrator uses to describe strange creatures, unusual environments and all the general weirdness that goes on in the stories.