The Plagiarist

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The Plagiarist

Plagiarism is alive and well, and it is the greatest literary art form ever known. It was extensively used long before writing was invented, after all that is what story telling was all about millennia ago – the retelling of the tribe’s history. The best plagiarists were considered to be the truly great story tellers, those who could repeat the tales exactly as they had been told since the oldest members of the tribe were children. Which description covers all of the saga from the Viking era, the bible and endless other so called timeless classics too, just consider the tale of Beowolf. Alas, far too much of the plagiarism of human history has been lost and we are all diminished by that.

Okay in more modern times I admit it, despite being a published author of a hundred or more books, mostly novels but some volumes of short stories too, that have sold by the million I’ve never written an original tale in my life. The truth is they are all essentially the work of someone else. How did I get away with it I hear you asking. Well the truth lies in the use of the word essentially. Given that there has been nothing new created for centuries, millennia if one counts the oral traditions that were the precursor of written works, most of what we consider to be original work is really a rerendering of some thing, or some things, that has gone before. I’m just better at blending dozens if not scores of previous works into something that appears to be new and sells, so I’m no worse, nor any better I hasten to add, than any writer of the last few millennia at least.

Nothing is ever what it seems.

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Oh so true

There are only a few basic stories. Every fiction story we read now can be traced back to those original tales somewhere in the dim and distant past.
What we do as authors is put our own slant and vision on those stories. We are there to entertain the reader. If we do that our job as storytellers is complete.

The more I write, the more I have to be careful about saying the same thing again and again. I've come close to writing two stories that are almost the same.

Keep on writing people.

... Busted ...

Most of the incidents in my 2024 Resolutions story are based on real happenings.

I figured I could "write it realer" (more real) if I took real things and 'mooshed' them around a bit. I also thought that if I based events on real stuff, then writing the emotions would be easier/'realer'.

I guess this means I 'plagiarized reality'....


Robertlouis's picture

…is the least sincere, but arguably the most successful, form of flattery.

Cynical, moi?