Recently, I came across a tool that intends to help with editing our write ups. And I heard mixed reviews about this editor tool. I got curious and wanted to take a shot at it for myself to see what it is about. Yes, I am talking about the Hemingway App.
According to the Hemingway App help documentation, this editor helps us simplify our writing by highlighting the hard and very hard sentences. Also, it points out passive voice usage along with adverbs. Spelling mistakes do not get any extra help with spellings. You have to take care of it.
So, it basically grades your writing; the lesser the grade, the better your writing is! I have tried a few articles with this tool and to be frank I do not want to use it again. It sure helps make the article more easier to read, but it is not above human judgement. I tried pasting part of a famous children’s novel, Heidi, into the Hemingway App editor and it gave the writing a ‘Poor – Grade 17’ rating! The rating is outright ridiculous sometimes.
The Hemingway App highlights words that should be replaced for simplicity, but sometimes those are the most effective words in the prose. This editor seems to give better rating if you have less text, may be around 300 words. Anything more, the editor scores lesser and lesser. So, the overall grade seems much worse.
Now check this screenshot. It is the rating for this article in full.
This article’s rating is ‘Good – Grade 6’; here you see that it highlights that the word ‘very’ should be removed. So, is it meaningful when we remove it and make it ‘hard and hard sentences‘?? Likewise, it highlights ‘basically’!
Check out the below screenshot too. I added meaningless random words at the end of the second paragraph and still got a ‘Good’ rating unbelievably!
Things like these make the Hemingway App unreliable.
All in all, the Hemingway App might be useful if you have less text and want to make the text extremely simple to read. This App intends to help writers fine-tune their text. And a great amount of hard work must have gone into it by the developers which is well appreciated. But again, when you take help of this editor, you need to make sure that the readability is not lost altogether 😉