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Accidentally Plagiarizing Yourself:

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Ever copy something from one of your other stories, without even realizing it?

I for example, wrote this:

Brainwashed bad guy infiltrates private area. Wreaks havoc. As he is about to teleport away, someone grabs him, and is teleported away with him.

The two fight, and the brainwashed baddie ends up playing dead in order to draw the other person into a false sense of security, where they promptly captured the good guy, who is tortured.

I have NO idea how I managed to come up with that exact same process, in two separate instances in two entirely separate contexts. =@_@=
oddly
 2 nrjxll, Sun, 18th Dec '11 1:39:07 PM Relationship Status: Not war
I've knowingly plagiarized myself in the past, by taking bits I liked for otherwise-poor stories and rewriting them to fit into newer works.

 3 Sharysa, Sun, 18th Dec '11 1:42:14 PM from Alameda, CA Relationship Status: Dancing with Captain Jack Harkness
The local bard
That is rather eerie, but at least you won't need to sue yourself?
 4 USAF713, Sun, 18th Dec '11 1:43:12 PM from the United States
I changed accounts.
Yeah, I chop old/useless/horrible/some combination of those stuff apart all the time to take what might actually be decent out of it, before I leave the rest of it for the proverbial flames.

I wouldn't write the same or similar things in items I actually want to keep working on, though. Or at least, I'd try not to.
I am now known as Flyboy.
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[lol]Very true. It does make me a bit sad though, because it gives less of a chance for the story I had been planning on eventually revamping a chance to stand on its own two legs.
oddly
oh no the snack table
I have NO idea how I managed to come up with that exact same process, in two separate instances in two entirely separate contexts.

Who cares? Iterate on your old stories. Polish them, redesign them, look at them in new ways, retool them, revamp them. Rewrite the same one a hundred times if that's what it takes to get it right. It really is okay, since nobody has to know you did it but you.
It's beautiful and so full of deep imagery that it doesn't surprise me to find that it has gone WAY over your head
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The contexts for both are very much different, it's just the core is the same. It's more of an amusing thing than me looking for writing help.
oddly
It really doesn't matter. If you're writing something good, the source doesn't matter. If you're writing something bad, the source still doesn't matter.
 
Ecce Homo Superior
I'm very prolific, so this happens to me quite a bit nowadays. Not so much plot elements as accidentally reusing descriptions and similes from my older stuff.
(it's David Bowie)
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AA: Dispense the morals in another thread. This is just for amusement.
oddly
 11 Noir Grimoir, Sun, 18th Dec '11 4:31:02 PM from San Diego, CA
Rabid Fujoshi
People have similar things happen in their different stories all the time. In this particular case, if anything it means you're becoming too reliant on the same process of making things happen in your stories and it wouldn't hurt to brainstorm a bit more.
SPATULA, Supporters of Page Altering To Urgently Lead to Amelioration (supports not going through TRS for tweaks and minor improvements.)
 12 Cakman, Sun, 18th Dec '11 4:57:52 PM from whence he came.
READ THE 13TH SAGE.
This thread went from "Hey, guys, isn't this funny?" to "THIS IS TERRIBLE, WHY WOULD YOU LET THAT HAPPEN."
My only goal in life is to ensure that Mousa dies of a stress-induced heart attack by the age of 23. READ THIS
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[up][up]Pfffft. Making a bit of a leap in logic there, aren'tcha? [lol]

edited 18th Dec '11 4:58:58 PM by AtticusFinch

oddly
 14 Nick The Swing, Sun, 18th Dec '11 5:17:40 PM from Ya really wanna know? Relationship Status: Dating Catwoman
BFS Enthusiast
Once, I plagiarized myself.

I promptly called my lawyer and discussed the possibility of self-law suit.

My lawyer was incredulous at first, but eventually we found a way to punish me for plagiarizing from myself.

A settlement was arranged and I gave myself fifty dollars from me.
 15 Noir Grimoir, Sun, 18th Dec '11 5:19:59 PM from San Diego, CA
Rabid Fujoshi
[up][up]What do you mean?
SPATULA, Supporters of Page Altering To Urgently Lead to Amelioration (supports not going through TRS for tweaks and minor improvements.)
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Well, it sounds like you're making judgments about my creative tactics without any information other than an amusing anecdote.
oddly
 17 Noir Grimoir, Sun, 18th Dec '11 5:28:28 PM from San Diego, CA
Rabid Fujoshi
Sorry, that wasn't my intention. What I meant to say, if I was being unclear, was that it probably didn't mean anything, but if you really wanted to assign it some meaning, " " is what it could mean. I do know a lot of people tend to use similar conventions in many of their stories, sort of like you having a tool box with all your favorite tools that you use all the time. If that bothered you (I don't know, I just kind of got that impression for some reason), the thing to do would be to make more tools. It wasn't meant as a judgement on your process.

edited 18th Dec '11 5:29:31 PM by NoirGrimoir

SPATULA, Supporters of Page Altering To Urgently Lead to Amelioration (supports not going through TRS for tweaks and minor improvements.)
read
Well, it's a fairly obscure chain of events, so I doubt it will be showing up too much. It's mostly a result of me liking certain elements:

  • The good guys losing (in the short term, obviously)
  • Good guys turned bad guys (or manipulated bad guys)
  • One on one fights (esp. since I have large ensemble casts)
  • Quick fake outs (as in, instead of "oh noez, he's dead" it's "OH NO HE'S NOT DEAD LOOK BEHIND YOU IDIOT)

Yeah. Those types of things always show up, and they are fairly fine on their own. I'm just amazed they aligned so similarly. I guess it makes sense, since the original story is 4 years younger than the current story.

I guess it was mostly subconscious. It happened before, on a much more minor scale.

edited 18th Dec '11 5:34:27 PM by AtticusFinch

oddly
 19 Age And Youth, Sun, 18th Dec '11 5:35:30 PM from Floppy Coppying HQ
It really was, though
Those are broad enough themes that they aren't necessarily being reused. I wouldn't accuse someone of plagiarizing me if I had those elements in a story and someone else had the same elements in their own.
He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.
 20 Noir Grimoir, Sun, 18th Dec '11 5:50:16 PM from San Diego, CA
Rabid Fujoshi
Yeah, plagiarizing is word for word taking something. I would consider this recycling.
SPATULA, Supporters of Page Altering To Urgently Lead to Amelioration (supports not going through TRS for tweaks and minor improvements.)
If it makes you feel better, one of the greatest works in Western literature is fanfiction. Real person revenge fanfiction, no less.
 22 Age And Youth, Sun, 18th Dec '11 6:32:36 PM from Floppy Coppying HQ
It really was, though
[up]It's not a great work if it doesn't have Nietzschian overtones and dark trenchcoats.
He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.
On one level or another, it ruffles my feathers to see The Divine Comedy lumped into the same category as that Harry Potter story I wrote when I was six.
 
 24 USAF713, Sun, 18th Dec '11 6:51:44 PM from the United States
I changed accounts.
Only Bible fanfiction would get away with that.

More seriously, The Divine Comedy is basically a piece of original fiction that is set, theoretically and loosely, in the same setting as a previously-established work.
I am now known as Flyboy.
To be fair, calling it "fanfiction" isn't quite correct, since there wasn't any such thing in the past.

To borrow something my friend said, mythologies were essentially more serious versions of what is know known as chaotic fiction; I think you, USAF, would be most familiar with the Slender Man.
 
Total posts: 39
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