Re: Can someone ask for a writer to start a series using a dropped story as the basis?

#1
Question is in the title. So many series that just cut with no warning or even a response that were very entertaining. Would it be cheating or against ToS if someone was asked to start over and use a stopped premise if the original writer disappeared years ago with no word?
I REALLY miss https://www.royalroad.com/fiction/3041/new-game-plus but I'm a terrible writer. I go off on too many tangents all the times I've tried, and I use way too many info dumps.

Re: Can someone ask for a writer to start a series using a dropped story as the basis?

#2
Well, technically you can ask authors to do that, but they really shouldn't be doing it. This gets into the territory of plagiarism. Yes, even if the author abandoned the original story. You could try it as fan fiction but sheesh, it's a minefield. 

Each author has their own voice and no matter how skilled the author, it will be immediately obvious that it's a different story either way. Unless you can get the original author to come back, you're not getting the story back, just something that acts like it. Worse, most authors make leaps and bounds while they learn to write, so even with the original author, it might not be the story you came to love. 
If you've read the Wheel of Time Series by Robert Jordan, you'll know precisely at which point Brandon Sanderson took over. It's still the same story and Sanderson did a great (*cough* better) job at it, but it felt like an entirely different beast. 




Re: Can someone ask for a writer to start a series using a dropped story as the basis?

#4
First there is a legal problem with this idea - the next author will need the OK from the original author or he will be breaking copyright.
(yes, every fanfiction breaks copyright laws, it's just that copyright law is civil law and needs the IP holder to first know of the infriction and second be willing to pay a lawyer to take down the fanfiction, usually without any chance of being compensated as the people writing fanfiction usually don't have enough income to be worth suing)

Second, even if you get that OK there is the question of why the story was abandoned - sometimes that are time and RL issues, but often it is because the story itself had flaws or the original author wrote himself/herself into a corner and doesn't know how to continue without breaking the concept.

Third, you'll have to find an author who is interested into continuing that story - and that is most probably the biggest problem.
Every good, creative author usually has more ideas of his own than time to write them down - especially if he's not writing fulltime professionally.
So why should he skip his own ideas to continue writing someone else's story?


Yes, it is possible to ask and yes, someone could classify the continuation as fanfiction and continue the story (after all, that is the definition of fanfiction - to write in a setting from someone else that you're a fan of).
That said and with the problems above I consider it highly unlikely that the continued story will have a good quality in the same way the original story had.

However it might be a much better idea with higher chance of success not to ask for a continuation but to ask for a different story based on the same concepts - if the concepts of that abandoned story were good, then you might really find someone who uses the same concepts in his own story.

Re: Can someone ask for a writer to start a series using a dropped story as the basis?

#6

Andar Wrote: Third, you'll have to find an author who is interested into continuing that story - and that is most probably the biggest problem.
Every good, creative author usually has more ideas of his own than time to write them down - especially if he's not writing fulltime professionally.
So why should he skip his own ideas to continue writing someone else's story?


How true that is ... oh, how true that is ... never enough time...
New Reply