Michael Crichton: Formula Writer


Michael Crichton's work isn't exactly predictable (it's almost random), but certain patterns emerge after you read a few of his novels.  Many of them have pretty much the same formula:
1) take a bunch of experts in disparate fields...
2) then stick them together where they have to get out of a weird situation...
3) and make them battle science/technology gone awry.
Seriously, you could create a random Michael Crichton plot generator.  The output would read:
"A [x1], [x2], and [x3] have to fight [y] in order to escape from a [z]."
Where...
x = geologist, paleontologist, astronomer, chaos mathematician, or a guy who trains gorillas to use sign language

y = nanobots, dinosaurs, sea snails, space viruses, or a previously unknown species of silverback primates

z = jungle, deep sea base, virology lab, or a futuristic amusement park (this last one works for two Jurassic Park novels as well as Westworld)

Voi la!  Now you have an outline for your very own Michael Crichton novel.  Enjoy!


If anyone wants to write the code to do this as a CGI, I would greatly appreciate it.  I couldn't find a script that would do what I wanted and I don't have the time to learn how to compose one from scratch.  If you want to help out, please write.

Part II

I wrote an expanded version of the above with the intention of actually writing the script to generate random plot synopses (much like the random Fight Club haiku generator), but I never got around to it.  Enjoy the expanded text.

x =
microbiologist
military weapons expert
police detective
foreign languages specialist
expert in Japanese culture
expert in Medieval combat and dead languages
big game hunter
archeologist
accomplished martial artist
precocious kid
lawyer
computer programmer
psychological expert in alien invasions
deformed video graphics artist
reckless newspaper reporter
quantum physicist
neuro-surgeon
geologist
mineralogist
paleontologist
billionaire adventurer
astronomer
robotics engineer
chaos mathematician
guy who trains gorillas to use sign language

y =
a swarm of nanobots
a ruthless band of rival science entrepreneur
psycho with electrodes implanted in his skull
deranged robot cowboys
alien intelligence
ruthless Japanese businessmen
genetically modified dinosaurs
medieval warriors
sea snails
a giant squid
space viruses
a previously unknown species of silverback primates

z =
a previously unexplored jungle island
ancient ruins deep in the Amazon
a deep sea military research base
a secret government virology lab
an abandoned hospital wing in the middle of the night
a futuristic amusement park that has lost power
a futuristic amusement park when the fail-safe malfunctions
a time travel experiment gone awry




Copyright Ale[x]obiologist.

Back to the index