There’s No Such Thing as Original Stories: You’re Not Original and Why That’s Good

Have you ever heard that there are no original stories? As an author, did this turn your stomach or make you angry?

Although the idea that there are no original stories sounds upsetting, especially for authors, the fact is that every story follows the guideline (more than likely) of “very same, however different.”

Thats an advantage!

Doing this means that your story will impact your perfect readers, and heres why.

If stories were entirely initial, it would be hard to understand if there was a readership thinking about them. We want stories that are unique, however that also follow the very same conventions and tropes of certain types of stories that weve checked out or seen before.

As soon as Upon a Time, I Believed in Original Stories

Rather than go into in-depth examples in this short article, I want to mention some easily recognizable examples to assist you recognize that nothing is truly initial.

A hero has set out on a long journey to finish a quest or acquire a reward that is far. They fulfill and join up with unlikely buddies who help them along the method or end up being opponents.

Every story ever told, I thought, should be entirely and entirely different. Absolutely nothing needs to duplicate, absolutely nothing needs to be the same as anything else. And if I wrote anything that resembled something anyone else has actually composed in history, then I need to be an unoriginal hack who will never make it as an author.

However exactly what does it mean to be unique if not original? Lets take a look.

I utilized to believe every story is initial..

By the method, my book is still searching for members to join its launch group. To get an early copy for evaluation and be upgraded on publication progress, please reach me on my.
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As it turns out, this couldnt be further from the reality.

My characters do not follow the path of others in comparable scenarios, and my book does not walk a paved path but rather finds its own. My story may not be initial, however it is distinct.

At its core, Headspace is a story about a normal individual who goes into, or rather is forced into, a competition in a remarkable setting.

It grew its own way and differed significantly from books that follow the very same formula.

Due to the fact that the reality is that stories– excellent stories– function on solutions.

Does that noise familiar? Possibly because its the exact same formula followed by The Hunger Games, Ready Player One, cult timeless Battle Royale, and a number of YA and science fiction books.

The “Unoriginal” Original.

A hero is sent on a journey to complete a mission.

More importantly– a minimum of as I like to believe– its excellent.

I battled with this extremely as I put the book on paper, questioning if I am a fraud and copycat for simply developing this story. Nevertheless, it is a story I believed in and it required to be composed, so I forged ahead.

That is not to state that every story follows a formula, but the ones that grow popular or stand up to the test of time, usually tend to. More than that, most of readers dont want an entirely new story. What they actually desire is their story they understand told in an entire brand-new way.

There are a number of research studies on plot types and many individuals vary on precisely how to categorize plot. One thing remains the very same– skilled authors recognize that the bulk of stories fall into less than a handful of types.

Readers dont desire a totally new story. They desire the same story informed in an entire new way.

Though the principle is the very same, each of these books are different, and cherished in their own right. My story, as it turns out, is various also.

I didnt fully and completely embrace this lesson up until I wrote my future released book, Headspace..

As I wrote, I understood something crucial: the more I composed, the more organic the story became.

What story is this?

Maybe its Lord of the Rings. Thats the apparent answer.

However perhaps its Indiana Jones?

Or how about Watership Down?

If we wish to return even further, possibly its the Odyssey?

Is it possible that every hero on a quest given that Odyssey has just been a retelling of the same formula?

Now I see you scratching your head a bit and re-thinking this entire concept of “original.” Let me provide you the same concept, however rephrased a bit.

A normal, somewhat frustrated man is dragged onto a reluctant adventure by eccentric associates.

A normal hero is sent out on an adventure.

Ok, thats certainly The Hobbit?

Wait, maybe the old favorite, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy?

Or the TV show Sherlock.

It might even be Green Eggs and Ham!

Stop thinking about unoriginal stories as a bad thing. Stories that hold up against the test of time arent initial, but distinct takes on a cherished formula.

Different Stories, Same Formula as a Good Strategy.

Are these stories too similar to be fascinating? Or have you discovered each one enjoyable and distinct by itself?

Has it even happened to you that they share the same core formula?

Heres a much more blatant example.

2 individuals satisfy. 2 individuals fall in love. Two individuals encounter trouble they conquer. Two people live happily ever after.

What does this seem like?

Maybe every romance unique ever composed, plus every story with a romantic subplot?

Old Idea, New Twist.

You can find out more about stories that share a common formula in this post about short story concepts.

Here are three easy methods to make an old formula into a brand-new story.

You may now ask, “How do I distinguish myself if every story out there has been informed a hundred different times?” Is it even worth writing your story if everyone else out there has currently told it?

I do not see the romance industry diminishing whenever quickly. In fact, there are more romance composed every year and the people love them just the same.

How you tell this story will be different from everybody else, see? The world requires the variation you desire to tell, too..

Make Your Story the Same, But Different.

Yes! Everyone else has informed this story, but you have not.

1. Fresh Perspective.

Every set of eyes in a story looks at its events in a different way..

Take a traditional story and inform it from someone you wouldnt expect to speak with, and all of a sudden you have a tale never ever informed before.

A romance seen from the eyes of the rival love interest is a new story completely.

For instance, a superhero story informed from the point of view of the partner is totally various from the heros point of view.

A story distinguished a various viewpoint ends up being a new story totally. This means a brand-new POV, we wish to hear from your narrators in a fresh method!

2. Unanticipated Twist.

Maybe the killer everybody idea was guilty was really innocent and it was the detective who established the whole thing.

Nevertheless, if you alter simply one of the predicted elements, it turns the story on its head.

When checking out a book with a proven formula, readers tend to expect a specific order of occasion:.

Cinderella marries the prince.
The mission for the holy grail ends in obtaining the treasure.
The case is solved and the murderer discovered.
And after that some.

Possibly Cinderella never ever desired the prince to start with, perhaps rather shes conspiring with her sisters to burgle the palace.

Have you ever thought about that treasure at the end of the journey isnt a treasure at all, but a curse that must be provided to somebody and the unwitting hero has now end up being a sacrifice?

3. Combine Formulas.

Sometimes its finest to take a couple of and combine when you find it hard to find individuality within one formula! Nobody said you need to stick to one.

For fifteen minutes, try writing your own story idea, your own property, utilizing one of these 3 suggestions. Dont forget to share in the remarks section! And if you desire some feedback on it, make sure to comment on at least 2 other posts. Ask for feedback on your premise, too!

Every story ever told, I believed, should be totally and absolutely different. That is not to state that every story follows a formula, but the ones that grow popular or withstand the test of time, usually tend to. More than that, the bulk of readers dont desire a completely brand-new story. What they in fact desire is their story they know told in an entire new way.

Do not puzzle “initial” with excellent. And even more so, do not confuse “unoriginal” with bad.

You do not need to be initial to be distinct.

There is someone out there waiting to hear your variation of an age-old story, that just you can inform. Its important to acknowledge that formulas work for a factor and when you learn them, you can use them in a manner that is entirely and utterly, you..

The very best way to approach this is to choose one formula and add elements of others, otherwise your story could feel unfocused.

What are some story ideas you thought were original stories? Can you consider others like them? Let us know in the remarks.



For fifteen minutes, try composing your own story idea, your own facility, utilizing one of these three suggestions.

A funny with a couple of touching awful scenes, for example, or an adventure story that also result in the protagonist discovering something unanticipated about themselves, can quickly result in a more intricate, and more special, story..

Now that you know there is no such thing as original stories, work on creating a special story idea that is like another story that you like. Take a look at that storys property and notice its fundamental formula.

Whatever you combine, it will be a special way you tell the exact same story. It will be its own initial unoriginal method of telling it.


J. D. Edwin.

Beta readers and editors can help you determine what is the difference in between copycat and the very same taste with a twist. The rest is all in the details.

And if youre stuck, if youre scared that your story is too similar, rely on your composing community for some truthful feedback.

Look back at the three methods to make your story distinct in this post and pick one of them.

The World Is Full of Unoriginal Stories (Yipee!).

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