How many of you has this happened to? And what did you do or not do about it? What is “this”?
I’ve had a particular story in my head for years. At first it was just a concept, then a premise, then it started taking shape and form. The characters started becoming real and so did their problems. But everything was in my head.
I signed up for Daniel’s Plotting & Planning course hoping it would give me the structure I needed. Excellent as it is, I still didn’t start writing, but the story continued to develop in my head with his guidance. So I finally took the bull by the proverbial horns and signed up for the PPN+ course thinking (quite rightly so far as it turns out) that it would push me to start getting things out of my head and down into the written word. All good so far, I hear you say.
Two weeks into the course and me working feverishly on the plotting and writing. I’ve been told by a friend who was listening to a podcast today (Writing Excuses), that a recently published book was discussed which sounded exactly like the one I’m trying to write. My friend said that there were differences, but that the basic premise is the same. So I have several questions for all you writers, novices and experienced alike:
- Should I read the other book to see if it’s the same? I’m nervous about being swayed by it.
- Should I carry on writing? Or try to start fresh with something new (try to forget about several years of plotting and planning in my head)?
- If I carry on writing, should I read the other book before I publish/attempt to publish - to determine how different or similar they are (I don’t want to be accused of plagiarism)?
- Carry on writing it; the experience is good and publishing the first book you ever write may not be such a good idea anyway.
- OR - does this happen all the time and ultimately no two books will be the same?
I’d love to hear everyone’s views, especially if this is a regular event in a “writer’s life”.