1. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    Overused Idea?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Liza, Nov 5, 2011.

    I have this dragon society that worships four gods. They are pretty much representatives of fire, water, air and earth.

    Would this be an overused idea? Basically the four elements? I was just thinking that they were all a part of life, because technically you need all these elements to survive. No dragon can control any of the elements, but each feels more at home with one of them. Is it too cliche to use?
     
  2. Protar
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    Protar Active Member

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    I think if you put your own unique spin on it then it could be good. Like perhaps add secondary traits to these gods. Fire is aggressive and unpredictable, so maybe the fire god can also stand for war and chaos. Or perhaps it symbolises emotions? The Earth god could represent loyalty or manual labour, the air god purity or something. That kind of thing.
     
  3. shangrila
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    shangrila Member

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    Yeah, as long as you put your own stamp on it I think it'll be fine. The best way to explore something like this is probably with a mind map and just see where it goes. For example (and taking Protar's lead), fire could equal emotions which could equal passion which could equal sexuality/promiscuity? Or water could equal purity which could equal healing which could equal compassion or maybe pacifism?
     
  4. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    Well, the earth goddess is kind of the take-charge, motherly type, and she is the one who supports the dragons most of all. Every other god respects her, and she has quite a temper sometimes.
    Fire doesn't trust easily and constantly changes his mind. He craves power and likes to be admired and appreciated.
    Water is... a complete jerk. She shifts her opinion to and fro, usually siding with the people who get her what she wants.
    Air is light and carefree, but guides young dragons along towards their path.

    I think that is unique enough, but is it really?
     
  5. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    You haven't said anything about the story itself. It's not about the gods/goddesses. It's about the dragons who worship them, what they do and what happens to them.
     
  6. Holo
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    Holo Senior Member

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    Nowadays everything is a cliche. It is kind of impossible to come up with an idea that has never been used before. The key is to make it unique by adding your own twist to it. Simply do something different with them. Sure dragons and the four elements have been used before, but I'm sure your plot, characters, setting, conflicts, etc. are different than the other stories that used them. Go for it. By the time you're finished, no one will be thinking it is cliche.
     
  7. ghostwriter14
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    ghostwriter14 New Member

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    I have to agree with Holo, it is extremely difficult to come up with something that is truly unique nowadays; everyone's writing and their ideas will always have something similar to be compared to. With that in mind, I do think that the elemental gods idea has been used and re-used a lot in fiction (and RPGs), and I would say that you would probably find it quite troublesome to turn it into something really unique. I can see what you've tried to do by taking characteristics of the elements and applying them to the personalities of the gods, but personally I think this idea has likely been used many times before. I'd say that this is the product of trying too hard; with some ideas I think the more you think about it and try to force it into some form and develop it, the more less unique and more generic it is likely to become. Sometimes just taking a very basic concept and letting your creative instincts naturally take their course, you're more likely to come out with a product that is more your own.
     
  8. JPGriffin
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    JPGriffin Senior Member

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    Originality's hard to come by, but your idea definitely is unique enough to take the claim of "originality." If it's infringing a copyright, you have nothing to worry about. If it's your own personal dilemma, the elements are used almost universally, so I wouldn't worry about copying it from other sources. What's really going to make the story is going to be the dragon worshipers (Really neat idea, by the way!) and their interactions with said elements/gods/goddesses, from what you've said so far. I can't think of any other story similar to that, so you're in the clear.
     
  9. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    Okay, I guess that what you're saying is true. My story is about the dragons themselves, and I should focus on that. My plot isn't focused on that one element, so I shouldn't try so hard to make it sound more original. It's not very cliche, anyway, although used a lot, somewhat. If it won't make readers cringe, I'm happy with that.
    Thanks for the feedback, I just wanted to get a second opinion. :)
     
  10. Black Ashes
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    Black Ashes Member

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    You can use the 8 Elements: Earth, Air, Fire, Water, Ice, Energy, Light, and Darkness if you think 4 elements is over-used.
     
  11. Jdry
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    Jdry Member

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    I does sound a bit cliched, but like some people are saying, if you put a unique twist on your idea it will be okay. :)
     
  12. Dusk
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    Dusk Member

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    I really don't have anything new to tell yea sadly, because everyone is saying basically what I was gonna say. So really just put your twist on it. Maybe two of the dragons begin a conflict with each other sparking a battle of the elements? Just a thought, hope it helps.. :D
     
  13. Devrokon
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    Devrokon Senior Member

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    Your style can make the story unique, rather than the actual plot itself.

    It sounds interesting. I'd say go for it.
     

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