AI writes and illustrates a children’s book
The Future. Ammaar Reshi, a product designer in the Bay Area, started selling his children’s book Alice and Sparkle on Amazon last week, using ChatGPT and Midjourney to bring it to life. While it’s an impressive example of what AI is capable of and how accessible that power is to people, the book’s very existence may demonstrate why the most important discussion in the world of creativity right now is how artists and AI can coexist… peacefully.
AIs are becoming authors now.
- Ammaar Reshi put together the story of the 12-page-long Alice and Sparkle from a conversation he had with ChatGPT.
- He then illustrated the book using Midjourney (Time says the images came out “far from perfect”).
- Shockingly, the whole process took only a weekend to complete.
- Since December 4th, it has sold about 70 copies. Reshi will donate the rest of the copies to his local library.
Sticking with the theme of how he made the book, the story is about a young girl named Alice who builds her own AI robot that becomes self-aware and starts making decisions for itself. Meta, much?
A contentious chapter
While Alice and Sparkle may not be blowing up the Amazon Best Seller list, Reshi’s tweet thread on the story behind the book sure got a lot of engagement… mostly from children’s books authors and illustrators extremely unhappy with the cheapening of their art form. And worse, devaluing it with the stories they wrote and pictures they drew (AI is trained on existing works).
That issue has taken the art and entertainment world by storm this month, with the sudden speed, ease, and efficiency of creating works with AI sending artists into an existential crisis. Best summed up by Guillermo del Toro — on the press circuit for his soulful stop-motion adaptation of Pinocchio — he said he’s “not interested in art made by machines and the extrapolation of information.”
A battle between creatives and AI is brewing.