Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#2
I know what you mean. 

It's one thing to have that old adage of 'Nothing's original' in the back of your mind. It's another thing to have it shoved in your face. 

I've flipflopped in the past on whether or not I read similar works compared to my own, sometimes I don't want to risk it, but other times it can be a great learning experience. You can learn from what's come before and avoid any pitfalls that were made. 

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#5
I read some book on Egyptian mythology and thought the idea of having control over a person by learning their true name was so cool, I invented this whole story in my head about these wandering wizards called "Soothsayers", only to find when I googled "true name" to learn more that basically every major sci fi/fantasy author had had the same genius idea I did. I wonder, is it even copying at all, if the use of a concept is so widely cribbed? Either way it kind of put me off the idea, there's no way I could do it better than say Ursula K. Le Guin.
(The kicker is that the Soothsayers underwent a kind of magical training as kids so grueling that it turned their hair white, which I'm pretty sure is a plot point in the Witcher books lol)

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#7
I mean, if there are any fantasy novels out there that focus on lower-stakes and rides on the line of slice-of-life with characters who aren't human, then pass them to me. I would love to see actually different execution of something smaller scale that doesn't blow up to be something big and ruins all the fun. 

Seriously, I started writing this series because I wanted a fantasy novel that wasn't about defeat some big villain. The entire premise was based on a thought of stories about heroes when they are at home. What do they do when there isn't some big bad? A lot of what is going on is very personal. I wanted to explore those things, but in a fantasy world.

And when I was writing more traditional fantasy, the longer time went by, the more I stopped being put off when there was someone who had the same idea. Because I had my idea and I wanted to write it. I wanted to execute it because execution is what matters.

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#8
Nothing is original. Even I myself would love to find out about the story that wrote similar to me.
I recently found one new book, using Greco-Roman world and female leads (Elektra by Jennifer Saint), but it is still way way different.
I guess the only way to achieve "high novelty" is to write something extremely controversial.
Not that I encourage to do that, it could be a risk since most readers dislike controversial stuffs.
 

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#11
LJ Wrote: I wanted to execute it because execution is what matters.
Yeah, this for sure. Also, author voice and style can be your own. Most people write with invisible prose as they try to cut themselves out of the book, but after 1.4 million words, I'm ready to write with much more voice in my prose up to and including possibly breaking the fourth wall at times.

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#14
I'd read it. if you wrote a similar story that means you obviously like the content. 

"There's nothing new!" That's just a cynical argument. So what if two stories are similar? Deep Space Nine is just different enough from Babylon 5 that we get two great space station stories instead of one! Maybe Avatar appeals to certain people in a way that Fern Gully: The Last Rainforest doesn't. 

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#15
Xian Wrote: I'd read it. if you wrote a similar story that means you obviously like the content. 

"There's nothing new!" That's just a cynical argument. So what if two stories are similar? Deep Space Nine is just different enough from Babylon 5 that we get two great space station stories instead of one! Maybe Avatar appeals to certain people in a way that Fern Gully: The Last Rainforest doesn't.
I honestly would avoid reading it, for the fear that reading it would affect my own story too much. For example, if there were some aspects that felt too similar, I might end up steering my own story away from those to differentiate it. 

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#16
Aster Wrote: Browsing the recent audible sale, I found a book whose synopsis could have been describing my story - if you changed the names, no one would bat an eye at it. So much for a different take on the genre...
I've read thousands of books. I don't read for originality. If you make your characters and story interesting then that's all that matters.

sundog Wrote: (The kicker is that the Soothsayers underwent a kind of magical training as kids so grueling that it turned their hair white, which I'm pretty sure is a plot point in the Witcher books lol)
There's only ever been 2 Witchers mentioned with white hair. One was caused by a genetic mutation during the process of becoming a Witcher(they all tend to have different mutations). The other Witcher just had white hair because he was old.

Re: That feeling when you find another story that's basically the same as yours...

#17
zechamp Wrote: I honestly would avoid reading it, for the fear that reading it would affect my own story too much. For example, if there were some aspects that felt too similar, I might end up steering my own story away from those to differentiate it.

That honestly sounds like confidence issues, which is totally understandable but also something to work on overcoming. Being confident in your own writing is important, avoiding reading other works in order to preserve a arbitrary sense of authenticity is only going to hurt yourself in the long run. Why would reading that particular story be any worse for you than having heard of any kind of genre tropes previously? Or having seen any kind of story with a similar character arc, or so on? Writing in a void doesn't really work, since all writing is derived from something you've experienced. Reading other stories is also how people go "why did I like this? why DIDNT I like that? how could I do this better?" and so on.