On Animals and On GPT-4

Reading Susan Orleans' On Animals I'm struck by how essentially different from LLM-generated text her essays are. Now, of course, Orleans is at the highest tier of talent so it may not be saying much that "Well, that kind of writing isn't going to be usurped by LLMs soon." But it is instructive to read masterful text such as Orleans after spending time with the plausible-but-bland text of LLMs: her talent at shifting between whimsy and deep observation and her ability to move the story forward while doing so is more breath-taking if you read one of her essays after after spending some time with the surprisingly competent, stolid prose of ChatGPT-4.