Monday, October 11, 2010

this is the creepiest/freakiest/most bummer thing ever

So I'm surfing Goodreads, as I usually do, and I particularly like to look at the lists for upcoming titles, 2010 and 2011.
I found a book that's coming out in the next year and as I'm typing this I still cannot believe this happened:
The synopsis is nearly IDENTICAL to one of my completed WIPs. I almost died. Or maybe I did die. Seriously, I think I might be dead now.
Aspiring authors - do you have horror stories similar to this one? You think that you have an idea or a story that is so creative, original, unique, authentic, whatever...and it turns out that someone else has already written a story nearly exactly like it?
Is it even possible to come up with something so original anymore?
I was so hoping to get this book in particular published, because it's one of my stronger stories. But now I'm afraid it'll be labeled 'imitative' or worse, 'plagiarized.'
*curls up in the fetal position*

11 shout-outs!:

Brooke T said...

I'm so sorry about this :( What I say is though to don't give up and when you do want your book published, to try it anyways!! You can do anything if you put your mind to it!

and thanks for the comment: I actually love a couple of Sarah Dessen's books so I can't wait to see what you think of them!

Tara Martin said...

Ah, I'm sorry about that. I'm actually afraid of that happening to me! I think I'd wait and read the book before retooling your book. Similar ideas are okay, and honestly, if you did pursue publication, your book would be published years after this one!

Elena said...

Aw bummer! I feel so bad for you! As Brooke said don't give up! Keep working on it!

Jessi E. said...

That happened to me during NaNoWriMo a couple of years ago. I really was thinking I would polish up my story and try to publish and then - BAM - story with the almost exact same plot. :(

j said...

My friend, Janice had the same thing happen to her! Here is her post about it.

Ashley @ Bookaholics Anonymous said...

That sucks, but like everyone else has said. Just don't give up. Make your book happen!

La Coccinelle said...

Oh, yeah. I think we all have stories like that.

Years ago, I had this really interesting dream that I thought would make a great novel. But then The Matrix came out, and there went that idea!

I don't think it's possible to be truly original today. Even Disney ripped of Hamlet for the story of The Lion King.

Darlyn said...

Well, it's totally su*k but relax first and I think you can make something out of it.Maybe it's identical but it will be different if you can put some other interesting and different element.

And hey, don't give up and keep up. Even Einstein failed hundreds for one success. Chill.

Unknown said...

I do know how you feel. My very first ms was a YA story about faeries on a quest in the world... I worked so hard on it and wanted it to be a series. Then, come to find out as I was revising the first volume, Disney Tinkerbell movie came out... and the books.. even used one of my character names. It was back in 2007 and I was just crushed. It was like, now everyone will think I either copied the idea or it's tired now. I pretty much gave up on it and moved on... but I have plans for reusing some of the quest in a different story.
Also, there are many stories out there that are similar. And you can always use the success of the similar story as a selling point in your query.Best of luck!

Anonymous said...

You know, I wouldn't stress over something like that, for a few reasons.

Firstly, just because the synopsis sounds identical to the plot of your story, doesn't actually mean they will be all that much alike - I've read some very strange synopses before, that focused on the not-very-important plot points, or that I read after finishing a book and think "HUH?" Unless you actually read the book and think "UH OH, this is very similar", you can't really say.

Also, I read somewhere that every story has been written already ... I don't know how true this is, lol, since it might SEEM as though it makes sense, but it could just be that no-one has come up with any original ideas in a while :o However, it is true that there are a lot of similar story-lines out there, especially when it comes to certain genres, and so I think it's quite possible to have two books with the EXACT same plot that are still worlds different, because of the style of writing, the setting / characters / sub-plot(s), etc ... I've read so many books that are practically the same, and - unless the book is *terrible* as a whole - it doesn't bother me that the story seems familiar.

Jenny Girl said...

Aw that sucks! But it doesn't mean both works will be the same. Look how many vamp, sorcery, and magic stories are out there. Some themes are always the same but it's the writing that makes them different. The depth of the characters. I say critically look at what you have, and go from there. Continue on but make some adjustments if you need to. I twil lworl out. Definitely a heart stopping discovery though, no doubt.

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