The Dead Robots' Society

Writers on Writing


  1. I think you guys worry too much about ideas. It makes sense to worry about having completed work stolen, but ideas are really not worth much on their own. People are very unlikely to pursue the same idea the same way, and if they do (It has happened) it’s generally a sign that both writers should have put some more thought into developing it into something more original. I think maybe if you consider specific ideas vs general ideas. Specific ideas are more worth worrying about. Take Harry Potter. The specific ideas of a young wizard named Harry whose parents died when he was a baby and who grew up in a closet under the stairs of his cruel uncle’s house gets whisked away at 11 years old to a Wizard school and finds out he’s a legendary figure in wizard society for surviving the murderous assault of the greatest dark wizard ever when an infant is certainly specific enough to warrant protection. But the general idea of a young man who grows into his power and defeats the adversary who killed his parents is one that applies in many places, and such an idea is general enough that no two people will deal with it the same way. It applies to Harry Potter, and with a bit of modification, to Star Wars as well. I’ve got more show comments, but I’ll save them for the boards.


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