1. cazann34
    Offline

    cazann34 Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    41
    Location:
    Scotland, UK

    Have you ever been inspired by someone else's post?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by cazann34, Mar 12, 2013.

    Have you ever been inspired by someone else's post? I don't mean rewritten someone's work (in part or in a whole) then posted it as a critique. I mean have you ever read someone's post/story/opening chapter and thought I could expand on that. And did. Perhaps you took the concept and ran with it, taking it to new heights, or added more realism to a character that seemed lacking or even cooked up a new ending that you found more satisfying than the original.

    I have. Only when I did it I ended up writing a whole new story that had no resemblance to the original. I suppose what I'm asking is do you take inspiration from other writings, either amateurs or professionals?
     
  2. Youniquee
    Offline

    Youniquee (◡‿◡✿) Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    Messages:
    733
    Likes Received:
    36
    Location:
    Under your bed.
    I might take ideas from fan fiction at times, not really taken the concept of a whole story (maybe parts, but tweaked)
     
  3. murasaki_sama
    Offline

    murasaki_sama Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2013
    Messages:
    192
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    In the depths of my own mind.
    I have been inspired by a lot of what I have read. Just two weeks ago, for example, I was reading a text book chapter on indigenous religions, and suddenly I couldn't stop thinking about my fantasy world, and the mythology I was trying to develop there. I finished fleshing out a major part of that mythology, something I'd been struggling with for several months.

    I do not believe I have ever taken any one else's idea, character, story or world and taken it further or changed how it ended. In fact, I find the idea, personally, to be a bit unpleasant. It is someone else's world, or character or idea. What do I know about it? How could I possible write it? I prefer to play with my own characters, my own ideas and stories - that way I can take it as far as I want to go, I can explore routes and possibilities without even the slightest of fetters. And that is how I think of using another person's idea/story/world/character - its a fetter. I am taking something already shaped and fired, and trying to reshape it. It doesn't make sense to me to do.

    In the same way that I start thinking of gods, magic and souls after reading a non-fiction examination of religion, I get ideas and inspiration from a lot of places. But it only passingly resembles the source when I am done with it.
     
  4. idle
    Offline

    idle Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2012
    Messages:
    333
    Likes Received:
    32
    Location:
    one of the hearts of Europe
    But that's it, you don't. You take your own approach and make of it something completely yours, just the first impulse comes from someone else's work. That's fair, I guess, and I'm sure it's happened to me before although I can't remember any such a case right now.
     
  5. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,605
    Likes Received:
    5,879
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    If I had a finished published piece, I wouldn't mind seeing fan fiction. And we are all drawing from past works, be they things like Romeo and Juliet ( a million tragedies) or the Minotaur and the Labyrinth (Hunger Games). But I would be very careful about taking an idea from a post of something someone is working on. The idea is worrisome. I know you don't mean you are taking the idea that directly, but how do you know without permission what the post author feels is too close to their work?
     
  6. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,605
    Likes Received:
    5,879
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    I'd be annoyed if I saw anyone take any part of my story until after I published. It worries me sharing with other writers as it is but it's one reason I've only shared it in a local writer's group and I hesitate to put any of it online.
     
  7. cazann34
    Offline

    cazann34 Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    41
    Location:
    Scotland, UK
    This was not the reaction I expected. Now I feel immoral for asking such a thing. Worse for confess to it. But I will not sob into my pillow just yet.

    I will try and make my point. I have read many posts here and in other forums that suggest or even confess that the poster was inspired by a published novel, movies, games or graphic novel. I confess sometimes I need 'a leg up' to get started, I lack the inspiration. I have read on this site, that originality is a thing of the past and that we are all rehashing the same stuff over and over again. Perhaps I am an example of that theory.

    All I am trying to say is that we all take inspiration from others whether we are aware of it or not. If I was to lay out my work and the piece that gave me inspiration, they would be NO similarities at all. For example how many people have been inspired by Brams Stoker 'Dracula' which was written in
    1879. How many have eliminate this gothic tale to their own ends, Stephanie Meyers for one. How many others have reworked or rejuvenated the tale for the modern age. Many. I understand we are all copy-right frantic's in the 21st century and fear that everyone is a potential thief out to steal our ideas and or make money for it but I'm not one of them. Trust me. I trust you.

    Edit: My short story, 'The End' was inspired by another short written by someone on another forum. My work is NOT a copy of theirs. The only similarity is the subject matter. A meteor hurtling to earth. I posted my story 'The End' on another site and was told it wasn't original - no kidding. Think 'Armageddon', 'Deep impact' and many others.
     
  8. Red Rain
    Offline

    Red Rain Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA
    Well, unconsciously we all plagiarize someone else’s work. What I mean by that is the brain is always computing bits and pieces of information, storing it in a mental data bank, if you will, for us to pull info from time to time when we need it.

    Based on that, it is almost impossible to think that any idea you have is solely your own.

    Did you really think that character up yourself, or is he a combination of all the characters on a sitcom you watched last night?

    Is that plot something you came up with yourself, or did you pull bits and pieces of it from several books you read over the year?


    I think that is what you are trying to say, maybe?
     
  9. peachalulu
    Offline

    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 20, 2012
    Messages:
    3,829
    Likes Received:
    2,382
    Location:
    occasionally Oz , mainly Canada
    Yeah, everybody seemed to think more plagerism than inspiration - don't know where that came from. I will admit most of my ideas come totally
    from being inspired by other works be it movies or books. Even my writing style is probably an influence of my favorite ya author - Caroline
    B Cooney. The book I'm working on now, came from a summer back in 1999 when I was watching all these sci-fi movies - sequels to the
    Planet of the Apes, Soylent Green, Metropolis. My plots a mash-up of these elements with lots of my own additions. In fact by the end result
    people might go whoa! that's where you got the idea.
    The old authors confessed, without shame, to borrowing from each other, but I guess nowadays everyone's afraid of being
    called a plagerist or worst being sued.

    My short stories - Lipstuck was inspired by those goofy horror books from the 80's with embossed skeletons on the cover. I love
    those. None dealt with cursed make-up but one dealt with evil perfume.
    Not If - was inspired by The World, The Flesh and the Devil - my working title was the Loser, his Ex and the Bum.
    I have an unfinished horror about a man who won't get off an escalator - based on reading something on the internet.
    And The Carpet Layer was inspired by a scene in an old Michael Caine movie in which he and Sally Field are tied together
    half-naked during a robbery.
    John's Thumb was a horror twist on the story Tom Thumb. In fact in was to be called Tomas' Thumb.
    Thunderbolt started as a germ of an idea after watching Tom Sellek in Innocent Man.
    Optical Meltdown stemmed from my love of Lipstick ads.
    Fishstix - from a drowned town in the movie In Dreams
     
  10. Red Rain
    Offline

    Red Rain Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA
  11. murasaki_sama
    Offline

    murasaki_sama Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2013
    Messages:
    192
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    In the depths of my own mind.
    Its not so much that people are borrowing from each other as writers admit there are only so many original plots, when those plots are reduced to their purest form.

    Now, having reread my post, I can see there is some possibility for misunderstanding. I did not mean to imply plagiarism in my post; I understood that it was inspiration you took from the other stories.

    But, like you said, you read a story about a meteor hurtling toward earth. So you write a story about a meteor hurtling toward earth. When I read a story about a meteor hurtling toward earth, I might be inspired to write a story about dinosaurs or dead planets, or some kind of post-apocalyptic whatever. It is unlikely a meteor would appear in my story. That is what I mean by I don't like to use other people's ideas.

    Also, I should put this out there, a lot of people are comfortable writing fanfiction. I am not. I do not, and cannot, write fanfiction. I won't do it. I don't mind reading it, but the idea of writing it makes me sort of sick.

    So for me, if it is a work in progress or a published story, I am unlikely to take any single part of it whole and transport it into my own story/idea. I might get ideas from the story, word/idea association sort of things, or thoughts which lead to questions which lead to answers I've wanted for a while, but I am unlikely to just...reuse part of it. Its just how I prefer to write.

    If other people want to take ideas and reuse them, go ahead. Am I only going to use 100% original plots/characters/worlds? No, of course not. And I am still inspired by writers and novels I've enjoyed (and some I haven't). But I like to work from scratch as much as possible, if that make sense.
     
  12. jazzabel
    Offline

    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2012
    Messages:
    4,273
    Likes Received:
    1,666
    I take inspiration from anyone and anything, anytime, any place. Many have said in the past that art is stealing without anyone else realising it. In other words, take whatever inspired you and make it your own.
     
  13. mg357
    Offline

    mg357 Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2012
    Messages:
    368
    Likes Received:
    33
    As matter of fact i have been inspired by other writer's post's but i always but my own thoughts into the idea so that i don't committ the horrible sin of plagiarism.
     
  14. ms627
    Offline

    ms627 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2013
    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    0
    It's difficult not to be inspired. Whether people know it or not, or choose to admit it or not, nearly everything read, seen, or heard will have an impact. It's impossible a lot of times to know exactly where an idea came from. Is it wrong? Not at all. Part of sharing ideas is inspiring more. That's not a sin.
     
  15. blenderpie
    Offline

    blenderpie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2012
    Messages:
    46
    Likes Received:
    0
    Actually yes. The other night someone asked a question in which they described the premise to their work in a few sentences. I did not at all take their story. A few of the words stuck with me and inspired a story with a completely different conflict, different characters, and a different time period. While there is definitely part that is related by a pretty far stretch (the same stretch that you could say The Hunger Games and Twilight are the same because they are Ya about teenage girls who find love in an unlikely place...) there are probably a billion and five other stories with a similar "seed" to conflict. So I don't feel weird about it at all.
     
  16. Yoshiko
    Offline

    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Messages:
    758
    Likes Received:
    27
    I think it's the way in which you personalised the question (specifically referencing other works posted on this website) that led to the response it did.

    To answer such a specific question - no. But I'm not involved with that part of the forum.

    But in general? Of course I have.
     
  17. supportivemember
    Offline

    supportivemember Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2013
    Messages:
    54
    Likes Received:
    0
    ("...ah now, not only am I inspired by what you write, I'm very much aware that posting is in effect an open correspondence between us here, where for example if you ask me a question I'll come up some answer for you, meaning that your question lead me to my answer..." ventured the goblin, adding "...but what if you didn't ask me a question at all, but that instead your post merely prompted questions within me now, wouldn't it mean that your post/s inspired me but without my stealing anything form you now...", in fact, the goblin was here precisely because he fed off the posts, adding "...thank you casann34 for inspiring this reply then, I liked you question very much indeed...")
     
  18. Eric242
    Offline

    Eric242 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2013
    Messages:
    69
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Canada
    All the time. So much of what I write was inspired by stuff I read. It's just one of those moments where you read something and it sets a little spark off in your brain.

    ^ This
     
  19. Roxie
    Offline

    Roxie Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    327
    Likes Received:
    21
    Location:
    Aylmer, Canada
    I think it's normal to be inspired by people in our lives, the books we read, the movies we watch, the music we listen to, the arts and pictures we see. With so much fodder at our fingertips, we can't help but to be inspired by something we see or hear. I say run with it. Create and fuse your story together, with your feelings and thoughts. Will it have been done before? Yeah, probably, but don’t let that stop you.
     
  20. cazann34
    Offline

    cazann34 Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    41
    Location:
    Scotland, UK
    Thank you supportivemember, you have been.
     

Share This Page