1. Jessicalove08
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    Jessicalove08 Member

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    Is it wrong

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Jessicalove08, Nov 10, 2008.

    I had to go to another forurm, because no one wanted to write a review for my revised chapter one of Amanda's Lament here on Writing Forums. But anyway, I wrote a scene that I thought was awesome, but it turns out it's been done and I sound like a copycat writer. I was wondering, correct me if I'm wrong, if I reword this scene, would it be different? And how can I reword it without copying it?

    Here's the scene from my verison

    The first time I met him it was dark. He stood there stoically in a way that sent shivers up and down my spine. He looked at me and whispered, “A storm is coming. You better be ready.”

    I looked at him surprised. “May I help you?”

    “You better be ready for it,” he whispered as he smiled at me. His smile was deep, dark and mysterious. I felt my heart beat faster as I looked at him.

    I basically whispered, “Who are you?”

    “Let’s just say I’m a friend.”

    He turned and started to walk away.

    “You know I don’t need anymore friends.”

    “I didn’t say I was yours.”

    Here's the scene from Buffy's pilot episode taken from an unofficial transcript on twiztv.com:

    Angel: Don't turn your back on this. (tosses her the box) You've gotta
    be ready.

    Buffy: What for?

    Angel: For the Harvest.

    Buffy: Who are you?

    Angel: Let's just say... I'm a friend. (starts to leave)

    Buffy: Yeah, well, maybe I don't want a friend.

    Angel: (turns back) I didn't say I was yours.

    Does anyone have any advice for me on how I should reword this? I'm kind of stumped on it. I'm trying to reword it, but it doesn't feel right as I go along. So any ideas anyone?
     
  2. lipton_lover
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    lipton_lover Contributing Member

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    It's hard to say... you use different words so I'm assuming you want a scene rewrite, meaning changing what happens. And if that's the case, it really depends on the story, which only you know inside out. I'm not sure you need to change it though... they sound different enough to me.
     
  3. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    There are always going to be people who will think your work looks exactly like someone else's. The only thing you can do is be as individual as possible and do the best work that you can.
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    there's no need for you to change
    !... what you wrote is not exactly the same as that scene and i'm sure that scene was just as close to pre-existing scenes in books and movies and tv shows as yours is to it...

    there's nothing totally original any more... everything's been done over and over again... so, all you can do is write your story/book the way you want to and not worry about individual bits being like this or that... as long as your overall story isn't the same, it's not a problem...
     
  5. NaCl
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    NaCl Contributing Member Contributor

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    I agree completely with mammamaia. One brief section of dialog will be considered in context with the story line around it. It's unlikely to provoke angst unless you borrow some well known phrase like -- "Go ahead. Make my day!" If I was you, I would complete my story and then review that small section in final overall context.
     
  6. architectus
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    architectus Banned

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    It's not plagiarism so don't worry about it.
     
  7. The-Joker
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    The-Joker Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's just one scene, and a miniscule one at that. Trust me, by the time the reader gets to chapter 3, he's not going to be bothered whether the opening lines resembled a buffy episode he has stored away in his photographic memory.

    BTW I like the dialogue, it's pretty clever. I guess great minds think alike.
     
  8. kkane49
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    kkane49 Member

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    If you want to be on the very safe side of accusations, take out the "I'm a friend.." "Didn't say I was yours." Maybe you could have Angel answer her "you know I don't need any more friends" to "Maybe I know that you do." k
     
  9. JGraham
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    JGraham Senior Member

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    Even if the scene was similar it does not matter. Im sure the stories are different, characters are different, time frame different. Im sure no matter what it is different and what happens after is different. I wouldn't worry about it being similar at all, just ignore the people who say so.
     
  10. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    there's absolutely no need to do that... the same lines have been used before 'buffy' and will be many times again, as they're a pretty 'normal' smartass thing for someone to say... and it's not even close to plagiarism, so don't be paranoid about a few words...
     
  11. CorinneY
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    CorinneY New Member

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    There is only one line that is exactly the same, and the stuff leading up to it is very different. I don't really think this is a huge problem. And the line before that is only slightly like the Buffy one.

    Saying it is plagiarism would be like saying the writer of the movie "I am Sam" owns that sentence (and isn't that sentence in Dr. Suess somewhere?)
     

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