1. SeverinR
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    SeverinR Contributing Member

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    Mercedes Lackey, breaking the rules.

    Discussion in 'Book Discussion' started by SeverinR, Feb 22, 2011.

    My current favorite author is Mercedes Lackey.
    For those that don't know her, she is a writer of fantasy, European mid-evil mixed with traditional fantasy beings. (elves, dragons, dwarves, etc)

    She published one book,
    "Phoenix and ashes", this is basically Cinderella in WWI Europe.

    Yesterday I was at the library, I read the description of "the Black swan."
    basically the swan princess on larger scale(more women turned into swans.)
    even to the point of the main character being named Odette.

    I have little doubt the Black Swan will be a good read, as Phoenix and ashes was, but these are both cliche stories. One thing, at least in the Phoenix and ashes, the names were changed, none of the names were of Cinderella's story. Evil step mother, evil step sisters, but different names. The Black Swan seems to retell the old tale using some of the same names.(Woman hating man that learns the dark arts, becomes obcessed with turning women into swans by day, and women by night.)



    If written by a no-name, wouldn't the publisher ignore them?

    I have stated cliche can be overcome, but to take whole plots of children's stories? These seem to expand on the stories, but the premis is the same.
    Does she break the tradtional rules?
     
  2. Ellipse
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    Ellipse Contributing Member Contributor

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    The main rule publishers are concerned with is, will the author's work sell?

    Mercedes Lackey has established herself as an author whose work does sell. Publishers are willing to give her leeway with story ideas and things that they would not allow a first-time author to do.
     
  3. SeverinR
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    SeverinR Contributing Member

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    Thats what I figured, and I do expect the Black swan to be good.
    I would not doubt she could do little red riding hood and make it entertaining for her adult readers.

    Cliche is so taboo, if people trust your writing ability.
     
  4. lemurkat
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    lemurkat Senior Member

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    I enjoyed "The Black Swan".

    Many of the most popular books are quite cliched. Cliches are around for a reason.
     
  5. Ellipse
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    Ellipse Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yea, most of her stories are cliche. Personally, i don't think she is that good of a writer. The only books of hers that I do like are the ones where she cooperated with another author such as Elvenbane.
     
  6. Preacher
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    I don't see a problem with writing a story whose basic premise is something well known. Many well-known novels are simply variations on that theme.

    The trick is in taking that beloved story and adding a new, interesting twist; a new interpretation or even writing the tale from a new point of view. Using a theme that is familiar to the reader before they ever read the first page can be a good way to pull them in, get them interested.

    As writers, we all want to be unique. We want to write that great novel, that seminal work that others will, someday, use as a yardstick against which they measure their own. Most of us will fall short of that goal because the reality is that no matter how good our stories are, they are a rehash of a story someone else has already told.

    Obstacles overcome, love found and lost, good vs evil. Only the names change, the stories remain the same.

    But hell, don't let that stop you... I know I won't.
     

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