Blind Go Guessing Suggestion List

We realize that the number of authors and fics may be a deterrent to guessing. Thus, in an effort to increase the number of guesses, the mods have helpfully compiled a list of suggestion to hopefully make the guessing process a bit easier.



1. Divide and conquer

Since authors that wrote multiple fics are indicated in the author list (here), it might be useful to divide the authors into two lists: those who wrote one fic, and those who wrote more than one fic. Tackle one list at a time, that divides the number of authors you have to guess to about half for each category. The fewer the number you have to guess from, the higher your chances of guessing correctly, as any multiple choice test taker can attest to.

2. Make a chart

A dizzying list of fics and authors does no good in aiding the guessing process. Organize the information in a way that you can understand and work with. Yes, the author speculation is just for fun, so there's no reason to go overboard, but guessing blindly (XD) isn't quite as fun as a little bit of detective work.

3. Utilize the resources at hand

See which authors comment on which fics. There may be a red herring in that an author can choose to comment on his or her own fic to throw guessers off the trail, but that usually doesn't happen.

Don't forget about kifu_archive. Some authors have filled out the 'how many fics did you write' poll (again, be cautious of red herrings while refraining from paranoia), which further splits the pool of authors that one has to guess for.

4. Use of Japanese and Research

Several authors are knowledgeable about Japanese and demonstrate it in their writing. Some authors also do research before writing. Both things can help you distinguish between authors. Additionally, you can look at an author's other fics to detect a general trend.

5. Elements of style

There are links to each author's writing archive, also in the author list. Reading every fic that each author has ever written may not be feasible, but just looking at one or two can be just as useful. By this point, we're assuming you've narrowed down your list and are ready to look at the nitpicky little details.

A. Punctuation and typography:

An author's use of punctuation is often the most telling characteristic of their writing style…as well as the hardest to change. At the typographical level, you can look at how they write their dashes and ellipses (everyone does it a little differently), although that can be fairly easy to disguise. To dig deeper, look at whether they use semicolons, colons, dashes or ellipses, as well as how frequently and in what contexts they use them. Do they use the oxford comma? Are they fond of using dashes in dialogue? Do they avoid the semicolon like the plague?

B. Spelling:

Though not as common in Hikaru no Go as in series such as Prince of Tennis (How many different variants are there of Fuji's first name?) or Death Note (Raito vs. Light), the spelling of character names may still be a hint to the author's identity. Also, one may be able to see if the author prefers using first names or last names when writing about characters.

Spelling is also helpful to examine because of the differences between American and British spelling. Does the author use color or colour? Defense or defence? Pinpoint such words to narrow down the list of authors.

C. Type of narration:

Authors often have strong preferences as to writing in first, second or third person. Some people only write in third person, while others like to experiment with first or second person narrative. Even for a fic written in third person, it is worth considering whether the author writes from a single character's limited perspective, switches between multiple character perspectives, or takes the point of view of an omniscient, impersonal narrator.

In a similar vein, look at whether the fic is written in past or present tense. There may be authors who rarely write in present tense, while others frequently experiment with it. Although these stylistic aspects might not pinpoint you to a specific author, it can definitely help narrow down the choices.

D: Italics/Bolding/Underlining

Different authors have different methods of indicating emphasis. Some prefer italics, others bolding, or underlining. Once an author has settled upon a way to convey emphasis, they rarely change it. So look at the fic archives to get an idea of which forms of emphasis a particular author may prefer, and then comb through the blind go fics that you believe are by said author to see if they fit.

Amount of emphasis also is another telling point. Authors have a different degree of comfort with emphasis. Some don't mind using it every other paragraph, while others subscribe to the belief that 'less is more'. Emphasized words to wordcount can often show how much emphasis an author usually uses.

D. Mood and genre:

Mood is a nebulous concept, but it's often what you first notice about the fic. Is the fic serious or humorous? Is it sad, nostalgic, dark or romantic? Certain authors are particularly good at writing comedy, while others prefer to wrench their readers' hearts with angst. On a similar note, consider the authors' genre preferences. Some authors like to write supernatural fics; others may like to write historical settings. It's always worth checking to see what genres an author is or isn't comfortable with, particularly in the case of AUs.

F. Dialogue:

Dialogue is often the key part of the fic and may contain useful clues to the author's identity. For example, some authors are mostly dialogue writers, so their fic may be mostly or all dialogue. Look at the ratio of dialogue to description or exposition. Another important source of clues is how the dialogue is written. Are there a lot of dialogue markers ("he said", "he asked", "he replied", etc.) or none at all? Are thoughts set aside in italics? Is the conversation accompanied or interrupted by actions? Looking at the author's other writing may help you recognize these aspects of their style.


Authors, please feel free to guess the other fics. It would be great to have more guesses, since there were so many participants for this round. Good luck!

Edit: issen4 has handily compiled a list of all the fics for this round, along with a short summary. This is especially helpful if one doesn't have time to read through all the fics, but would like to jog their memories.
Um, may I offer my handy summary list of the fics, if it would help people to keep track of who wrote what? The nice thing is that this time round, the IDs are focused on the author, not the stories, so in effect, we only need to guess the person behind the ID.

Now if only I were good at this guessing thing...
Oh, thank you for linking to it! I saw it when you first posted it, but it didn't occur to me to link to it from the blind_go comm. That's a great idea, and I have edited the above entry to include it for those who miss it in the comments.

I know not everyone was happy with the single author ID idea, but it does make things a bit easier. Still, with 35 authors, I think it'll be more challenging than last round.

I'm sure you're better than I am at guessing! Why do you think I offered to help mod? XD
Awww, thanks a lot for this... I kinda really totally suck at guessing, but I'll give it a try before the dead line :D... >_> there's no point in having read all the fics if I'm not gonna try to guess at least a few! I'm definitely posting some guessings later ^__^, thank you very much for posting this ^__^.
I'm glad it was helpful. We don't expect everyone to sit at the computer for hours trying to decipher each author, but at the same time it's fun to do a bit of detective work. Hopefully, this list will give you some new ideas - and please feel free to suggest other tips. I look forward to your guesses!