ok, so what do you do when you have had an idea in your head for a few years, have worked out a great plot, characters, and have a well established layout for the prospective story etc. Then, while relating the idea to someone whose opinion you value, they say 'Well, great idea, but it has already been done'. They refer you to the previous material and sure enough - my plot and ideas, almost to the letter. Even down to my first choice of main character name being the same! Can you say 'Bubble burst?' For the record: My idea (in a nutshell) was a sterile world where a terrorist gets a gal pregnant and they go on the run to avoid the unpleasantness that might follow if they are captured. I had never read or even heard of 'The Children of Men'. When I looked it up I was astounded. Particularly spooky about the character name, Theo. So, how do you avoid this kind of 'conflict'? Suppose a scenario where I write the story, submit it to a publisher, and they write back and say; 'Ahem, you are having a laugh right? This is nothing short of plagiarism'. How does a budding writer produce fresh or original material without knowing the plot of every story or novel ever written (and let's just say the famous, well known and other noted authors). I do not expect an answer. Reflections and ideas would suffice.