I'm ready to outline a story for my NaNoWriMo novel. New ideas are practically bursting forth by the minute. I had lunch with my son on Saturday and thought I'd throw some out there for an honest opinion. He is the brutal critic in my life.
I began...."What about a story where the heroine keeps dreaming and having this mystery unravel. In the dreams, she meets someone that she needs and wants more than anything else in life. AND then it begins to confuse her because some items are bleeding over into her waking hours. She can choose to live in the dream world or find a way to bring him to her world. AND...." I look into my son's face as he stays silent. The déjà vu hits me. It all sounds very familiar.
I had been thinking about this storyline for a couple of days. It all seemed very original at the time. Looking into my son's eyes told me why it suddenly sounded very much like another story. He and I had seen the movie Inception together. We had both loved it and talked about it at length. If I hadn't been looking into my son's eyes, I'm not sure I would have made the connection. As a matter of fact, I'm sure that I would have just had that freaky déjà vu feeling while telling anyone else.
"It's too much like Inception, isn't it?"
"Not exactly. Well, yes a little," he says.
I frown. He smiles broadly.
"Don't feel bad," he says. "Did you know that the guy who wrote Inception originally wrote ten years ago? Then he kept fine-tuning it. He had time to watch The Matrix and a lot of other movies that I'm sure influenced him..."
Anna Quindlen said, "Every story has already been told. Once you've read Anna Karenina, Bleak House, The Sound and the Fury, To Kill a Mockingbird and A Wrinkle in Time, you understand that there is really no reason to ever write another novel. Except that each writer brings to the table, if she will let herself, something that no one else in the history of time has ever had."