Monday Rambling - Inspiration and Plagiarism
You know when you go to make your new post and you realize that your Monday post was never posted.... Oops.
Yesterday during the second live we talked a bit about an author that plagiarized a book and a TV show in one of her fanfiction and it made me think about the line between inspiration and plagiarism.
Bear with me, I'm going to be serious this week.
When I write, I draw inspiration from a lot of places. I've used poems and I've used plays, quotes from books and I've had characters also quote different medias. We live in a world where we use references all the time, and I think that's actually a beautiful thing on it's own.
But there's a difference between being inspired by something, and literally stealing someone else's words.
This has happened to me a few times. I've had people copy my dialogues or chunks of stories. I've actually had someone selling off my story on Amazon (it didn't stay there for very long). And I know that some of these people that plagiarized me didn't do it from a bad place. They liked my writing and they wanted to write something similar.
It's happened to me too. I've also read lines sometimes and thought "god, I wish I had thought of that before them."
I've also had people using storylines very very similar to mine, while I knew that they had read my story. I never know how to feel about that. For one thing, nothing is new anymore. Something I think I've used for the first time, has probably already been used by a hundred other writers. But like, also, mine.
But not really mine either.
Because we've read so many books, and we've seen so many movies and TV shows. We've heard the same stories and seen the same posts on Instagram. And we've often written so many words too.
So, it goes deeper. Every time I use a line, I think "I can't use that ever again" and it's a problem, because I know sometimes I've had characters say the same thing in different stories. It's like I'm re-using the same stuff over and over again.
Sometimes I say that I don't want to write any more Blake and Lexi stuff just because I've already given them so many of my good lines. I don't want to use all of my good ideas on them. What if I run out? This is something I'm actually scared. What if I run out of beautiful ways of describing a good first kiss? What if I run out of witty one-liners?
I think what I'm trying to say ultimately is that being a writer is complicated.
Alright, end of rant. I'm leaving now.