1. jgm2089
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    jgm2089 New Member

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    creating a story that hasnt been told already

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by jgm2089, Jan 24, 2011.

    im trying hard not to follow the same boring cliche's when it comes to writing my stories but everytime i feel like i created something new i always end up finding out that someone has thought of it already, has this ever happen to you?
     
  2. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Every story is going to have some element that's similar to something else; what matters is the way you write it and making sure the entire thing as a whole isn't a cliche.

    If you tell me what idea you're working on, I can offer some ideas on how to make it non-cliche.
     
  3. A Cat
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    A Cat New Member

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    Dear jgm2089,

    Everything new is the same old, except long forgotten on some kind of nasty dusty shelf.
    Think about it this way: most of scenarios were already written by the middle-ages folks. And i don't mean middle-aged, i mean medieval.
    The things that make a cliche story non-cliche is mostly language, choice of narration and etc. Try mix and matching cliche elements and use original narration style or perspective. Hope that helps - it helped me.
     
  4. FrankABlissett
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    FrankABlissett Active Member

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    Actually, no it hasn't. I've always expected that what I create has already been done - no matter how new it is to me.

    The only thing new is the audience - never the story. I've seen plots from old radio dramas recycled, including allusions to the original. To younger people, they seemed "fresh".

    The only advice I can give is to simply write. Spend your creative energy on becoming good enough that you overshadow your influences, instead of spending that energy running away from them.

    Good luck,
    Frank
     
  5. Islander
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    Islander Contributing Member Contributor

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    /agree with previous posters, and would like to add that interesting characters help create the illusion that an idea is new and fresh.
     
  6. twopounder
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    twopounder Member

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    Did Chevrolet make 3 wheeled cars because Ford had 4 wheeled cars? Did Germany use 4 winged airplanes when France used 2 wing airplanes?

    Keep in mind that some things are similar because they must be. That is simply the most efficient method for that industry. Writing is the same. You must include certain elements and in certain ways that are similar to every other story ever written. But this is just the fundamentals. You can still write a better story with more animated characters. Maybe you can make it feel more real or apply your ideas in a different way.

    Don't get discouraged because someone else just happened to think of the same thing as you.
     
  7. LCC
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    LCC Member

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    This might seem silly to professional writers, but I suggest that you let your story drift according to the reactions of close friends to what you just have written. Don't try to plan ahead, just develop new scenarios based upon audience reaction. What you will find is that you excite your readers by plumbing the depths of their psyches, causing reactions ranging from thrilled astonishment to horrified rejection. If you paint yourself into a literary corner, then just change the subject in the most natural way that you can conceive.

    In case you were wondering, although I have never been a paid writer, I have still captured the fascinated attention of a few readers in my ongoing first person internet series. Just Google my full name for some samples. My ultimate audience may be limited to the very perceptive, but I never cared for the average reader's opinions anyway. I write not for money, but for my personal amusement at the reactions which I provoke...

    Lonnie Courtney Clay
     
  8. Trilby
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    Trilby Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hi! Jgm, welcome to the forums.
    Creating a story that hasn't been told - Wow! there's a challenge.

    I agree with what the others are saying. Whether it be a love, murder, war, comedy story etc it has already been done. There are a limited number of genres.
    Just keep writing, develop your own voice and style and tell your story in your own unique way.
    Good luck.
     
  9. HorusEye
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    HorusEye Contributing Member Contributor

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    You can write a perfectly original plot, but chances are that people won't like it. Storytelling is two-way communication in the sense that the reader needs to be engaged, and if the reader doesn't agree with what happens, they'll feel ignored and left out and be put off by it. I have it that way with most of Lynch's movies.
     
  10. Fiona
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    Fiona Member

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    The chances are, you probably will always find some element in your story that has been done before.

    However, it is not just about the plot/event in your story. It is the way you write it. There are a million haunted-house stories, but I don't let that stop me writing my own take on a haunted house. Amityville Horror by Jay Anson is nothing like Apartment 16 by Nelville. Yet they both contain elements of the supernatural, and stories of characters uncovering the source of the darkness in their home/building.

    It's the same when writing a song. There are only a certain number of chords in existance, but Purple Rain by Prince sounds nothing like Candle In The Wind, by Elton John. It's the arrangement and the use of the imagination. What you can do with the materials and resources before you.

    It has to be YOU that takes your tale somewhere original and unexplored. Even if you have to use elements used many times before.
     
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  11. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    Every story has been told before in some form. Unless you copy directly from another story, odds are the story that you are telling has not been told before exactly as you will tell it.

    Think of it in terms of us as people. We all have lives but nothing we experience hasn't been experienced by somebody else before. Therefore, if somebody told a story about our lives, it wouldn't be entirely original. But since there has never been another person just like us, it would still be original somewhat.

    Therefore, apply the same logic to your characters and story. It's not going to be 100% original but if you put any amount of effort into it, it likely will still have enough originality in it to be appealing.
     
  12. Cornflower
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    Cornflower Member

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    well Technically EVERYTHING ever written is borrowed from something or other remember Cinderella?? The oldest version of Cinderella takes place as early as Ancient Egypt (Rhodopis)

    Remember Beauty and the Beast? The oldest version dates back to Ancient Greece (Psyche and Eros).

    JK Rowling uses mythology in the Harry Potter stories (Fluffy?=Cerbus, Hermione? name of Helen of Troy's daughter from Iliad also a character's name from A Winter's Tale, Almost everyone in the Weasly family is named after a king or in Ginny's case a Queen, Sphinx?= Ancient Egypt/Greece Ron and Harry's Yule Ball dates their names come from Hindu some people think that going through the trapdoor/into the Chamber of Secrets, and through the Whopping Willow all are a journey into the Underworld and I know 3 Greek Heroes who have done it.)

    I'm re-writing a story based on fairy-tales (Majority of the story is a gender-flip of Disney's Sleeping Beauty ((PS. Dinsney's Sleeping Beauty used both the names Charles Perrualt gave the title character (Aurora) and the name the Grimm Brothers collected (Brier Rose) with a pinch of Snow White)
     

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