I rarely remember my dreams when I wake up. This morning, I woke up with a fully formed novel in my head. I actually started typing notes while the coffee was brewing. With each note, my excitement grew; could it really be this easy? Without thought, I had a beginning a middle and a wham-bam ending. I knew who the characters were, if not their names. Subplots flashed across synapses faster than I could get them written down.
"Genius!, I'm a fucking genius", I thought.
As the first cup of coffee thinned the fog, clarity took hold. Euphoria waned.
Ken Follett may have written this already.
Fuck coffee and fuck Ken Follett.
Note to subconscious: If you're going to plagiarize and convince yourself you thought of it first, I'd really rather have you skew toward Terry Pratcett. Your cooperation would be appreciated.
You can't plagiarize ideas, bro. If your noodle got all het up over this one, DO NOT GIVE UP.
Here, read this. (The "Blog" section).
Then read this -- well, part of it. Scroll down or search the page for "Harris."
Why not take the Follett-ish idea and write it as if it were a Discworld story? Boom, your Acknowledgements page is done. I'd read that book. So would my father-in-law.
Jeff, so you're saying it's more like sampling then?
Because I've this great idea for an adventure set on a giant ring around a star, only the ring is a square - I'm thinking of calling it Boxworld, or maybe because the heroes are all rappers, Blingworld. And I've got another one about this big black cube that teaches cavemen about dental hygiene and how to build spaceships...
When I was young, I once wrote a really awesome song. Best melody I've composed in my entire life. And then one day I happened to realize it was just the John Lennon bits from "A Day In The Life," only in a different key.
I was very sad that day. It still makes me sad more than twenty years later. Stupid brain. Stupid song. Stupid John Lennon.
Careful Eric, we don't want you tied in with the Lennon murder plot.
I'm more concerned I might be called as a witness in Clarence Walker's lawsuit.
(If I wasn't at work, I'd find a video link--it looks like JibJab might have one; if you haven't seen the original, seek it out. Seriously.)
Ah go with it. Nobody reads this Ken Follett guy.
And just make the idea your own. While you might be ripping ideas, plagiarism is copying the actual words.
Must be nice to have dreams that have some basis in reality, even if it is someone else's. I was dreamt that I won the Nobel Prize for Bank Robbery. White tails, fat check and all.
That's a hell of an idea for a story. Mind if I steal it?
Send me a royalty check.
Oh those quaint Canadians with their euphemistic, nicey-nice definitions of "steal".
Have the check wrapped around a donut if you please.
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