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Mythology with a few details left out:
Wants to be famousHello I am writing a story about a guy who knows alot about mythology. He discovers that the mythos behind legends around the world are somewhat true with a few details left out. This story is a hybrid of fanasty and science fiction. I have two questions: 1. Has this been done to death? 2. I have done my research on some mythologies at the local libary. I am worried that people might say that I Dan Browned on my story. How do I prevent that from happening?
four one seventeen
1. I think this is the sort of thing writers will always be able to do. I know that whenever I do a fantasy story set on Earth, I _have_ to consider how the mythologies will interact, and how much of them are true. So it's like Hyperspace — yes, there are a million stories about hyperspace, but there will be a million more because if you want to have characters moving between planets, you have to come up with some way for them to get there. 2. I guess you don't have to approach the project the way Dan Browne would, unless you want to. Just as you don't have to write about hyperspace the way that Isaac Asimov wrote about hyperspace, you don't have to write about mythology the way Dan Brown does. In one of the stories I was going to do (and still might), the main character finds out about the realities behind myths by encountering Loki, Sif, and Sigurn, and getting involved in what they were doing. Totally un-Dan Brown-like: she walks into a room and there is Loki's granddaughter, although she does not know it at the time. There are a million other ways to do it.
ZzzzzzzzzzDan Browning is insisting that the facts in your story are accurate to real life when they aren't. As long as you don't make that claim, it doesn't matter how far afield from the original stories you go, you aren't Dan Browning.
...if you don’t love you’re dead, and if you do, they’ll kill you for it.
Wolf1066As with anything, it's the execution rather than the number of times it's been done before. If you write an engaging story, the readers aren't going to think "oh, this has been done so often before". Make it unique, make it interesting, put your own stamp on it (which you'll be doing when you decide which parts of what myths are "real" in the story's universe) and they won't care. Do it badly and you can guarantee that one of the criticisms will be "the idea has been done to death". It's only ever "done to death" when the reader doesn't actually like the story. If they like it, it's "a refreshing and innovative approach to the fundamental building blocks..." As Maddie said, as long as you don't claim that your book is based on facts when it patently isn't, you should be fine. I've read a number of stories where they've taken different mythologies and melded them - and it can be done very well and make for an interesting story in an intriguing and marvelous universe. Unless you're making a slavish copy of someone else's All Myths Are (at least partially) True universe, you're going to handle it differently and your story will stand on its own merits.
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