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February 6, 2013
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Original Plagiarists

Journal Entry: Wed Feb 6, 2013, 9:50 AM
Welcome to OfOneSoul's first issue of...

How To Be
:iconoplz::iconrplz::iconiplz::icongplz::iconiplz::iconnplz::iconaplz::iconlplz:



... and for the Hell of it, the fictional fiction writer himself,
Richard Castle, will be hosting this article's .gifs.

:iconwooooplz:



o·rig·i·nal [uh-rij-uh-nl]
adjective
:bulletblack: belonging or pertaining to the origin or beginning of something.
:bulletblack: new; fresh; inventive; novel.
:bulletblack: arising or proceeding independently of anything else.
:bulletblack: capable of thinking or acting in an independent, creative, or individual manner.
:bulletblack: created, undertaken, or presented for the first time.





Issue #1




We're gonna be honest here, you guys. As touchy as the subject may be - it needs to be brought up, and [even more], it needs to be discussed. What am I talking about, you may ask? :eyes:


The myth about being ORIGINAL.
:iconawkwardplz:


Yes - it is a myth; a myth created to either heighten your personal standards of writing, or drive you mad and hinder you from ever wanting to create again. Or, as in my case - come across several stories with round-about the same base plot or universe as mine - and leave me saying...




... yeah, nothing. :grump:


After the honesty - it's time to get relatable.

It's soul-crushing, right? That moment when you realize that an idea or storyline that you've been feeding and nurturing for hours, days, weeks, even years has a slightly alike duplicate somewhere in in the universe that steals your proud admission of originality. :saddummy:

Out of no where, you're overcome with all of these negative thoughts about your work that previously you didn't second guess for a moment. You start thinking:


"OMG - their character is exactly like mine! Now I can't use him." :cries:

Damn it! That storyline is almost like mine! I have to start all over. :facepalm:


... or my personal :+fav: -


"That's basically what my book is about. GOD. I'm so not original." :stupidme:


... but it's just not true.





Just because your character has the same back story as someone else's - or your race has the same origin as another's does not mean that you can't be original. But do not worry - despite what cynics & jealous tarts might tell you...


- originality is not dead.
:iconstaredanceplz:


Consider this - J.R.R. Tolkien. Please don't kill me. :iconteheplz:

For goodness sake - do you really think the man created elves? Do you think that he created dwarves and dragons and their mutual lust for gold? READ BEOWULF, WHY DON'T YA? :spank:

No... even the masters of literature themselves are not completely original. But if anyone asked you how original was Lord of the Rings would you not say -


"Original!? It's a work of pure genius!"





So - the next time you find yourself perusing your vampire novel and you find that it sounds tragically reminiscent of Twilight... don't worry -

- there's plenty of ways to be more original than that. :iconohyeahplz:




Just in case Castle's pep talk wasn't enough to get you out of your funk, consider this:


When working on or beginning a new story - ask yourself a series of questions. Delve just a little deeper into your characters, the plot, even the places your journey will take you. Through a brief quiz and a little brainstorming - a cliché storyline can be the next bestseller that raves ORIGINALITY. Some of the following questions were taken from questionnaires here and here.


Ask yourself this…



1. Who is the main character?

:bulletblack: What kind of distinguishing facial features does your character have?

:bulletblack: Does your character have a birthmark? Where is it? What about scars? How did he or she get them?

Questioning the appearance of your main character is always a great start to be original. For example, what makes protagonists memorable & distinguisable from others? Consider Harry Potter. The boy has messy black hair, large, black-rimmed glasses, and a lightning-shaped scar on his forehead. Simple yet entirely memorable.


2. Who or what is the antagonist?
(The person, group, or situation causing trouble for the main character.)


:bulletblack: What is your character’s biggest fear? Who have they told this to? Who would they never tell this to? Why?

When you question your main characters fears & secrets an antagonist begins to form. However original you character's life, the more original the characters and situations around them become.


3. Who are the other people in the story?

:bulletblack:  Who are your character’s friends and family? Who do they surround themselves with? Who are the people your character is closest to? Who do they wish they were closest to?

:bulletblack: Where was your character born? Where have they lived since then? Where do they call home?

:bulletblack: When has your character been in love? Had a broken heart?

It is important to consider the characters that surround your main protagonist. The more questions you ask about them, the more original they become. Once again, consider Harry Potter. On the one hand, you have a very brave, intelligent young woman who is good in school and is the voice of reason. On the other you have a character who hardly has a voice at all. He usually never succeeds in anything, and is normally a coward.


4. What does the main character want?
(What’s his or her problem, goal, greatest need.)

:bulletblack: Why is this important? (It should be vital.)


5. How does the antagonist prevent the main character from reaching his/her goal?

:bulletblack: What does the main character do about this?


6. What are the results?
(Things should get worse, the problem more difficult.)


:bulletblack: What crisis finally results?


7. What is the climax?
(Moment of decision.)


8. What is the resolution? Is the goal accomplished, or abandoned in favor of something else, or lost?

9. What is the theme?

This will possibly be the make-it or break-it question. It determines your passion for the piece as well as the audience you will attract. Consider finding inspiration in the things you love - art, architecture, movies, books, history, etc.





The
:iconmplz::iconiplz::iconnplz::iconiplz:
:iconcplz::iconoplz::iconnplz::icontplz::iconeplz::iconsplz::icontplz:



Every month at the end of this article there shall be a mini-contest you may participate in. Every month it may be something completely different, but anyone and everyone can participate in the hopes of winning.


January 2013's Prize

100 :points:

to two random winners - OfOneSoul

How To Enter


Answer one, or all, or any number of the questions above in a comment on this journal. Work on your story in the comments of this article, and you will be randomly entered into a drawing that will be announced upon the publication of next month's article, Monday, February 25th, 2013.





I'm looking for your suggestions!


Feel free to post some ideas for the next articles theme. Do you have a question about character development? Would you like an interview with one of your favorite writers? Would you like me to dissect one of your pieces and use your work as an example of what and what-not-to-do?


Feel free to :note: OfOneSoul with your article suggestions or comment here in this journal...

- and feel free to ask me questions! After all...



:heart: OfOneSoul

journal skin by STelari
parchment texture by Mytherea
Once a month I will be publishing an editorial journal entitled, How to be Original in collaboration with #Love-Literature. Although this mostly concerns literature, much of what I have to say can be applied to all forms of art. At the end of every article will be a mini-contest where deviants may interact with the piece & possibly win prizes.

Learn something from this. :stare:
Add a Comment:
 
:iconmeryvamp:
meryvamp Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Professional Writer
Wow, thanks for this journal. I really loved it and was laughing throughout. This sounds like fun, so I had to join in :D

The name of my book is Daughter of the Sun. It is sci-fi, post-apocalyptic and geared for young adults. I have chapters and a picture of my main character up on my site: [link]

1) Who is the main character?
Eliana. No last name. She has fiery, frizzy hair that falls down to her shoulders. She has silvery-blue eyes. They often change color, so something close to this mixture. She is around 5 ’9, 130 lbs with a pale complexion.

She doesn’t have any birthmarks. She has been injured multiple times while out on the hunt. She does have a scar on her left forearm from when a giant beast bit her. Later, she tumbles down a mountainside and fractures a bone in her shoulder. She also sustains multiple bruised ribs and is bitten again by one of those animals. It takes a chuck of flesh out of her right leg. (Ah, the things I do to my characters :devilish:)

2) Who is the antagonist?
The antagonist is named Mavrok. He has black curly hair and black eyes. His eyes often swirl and smoky tendrils leak out; one of his many powers. His black eyes are framed by strange markings that appear to darken the closer they get to his eyes. He’s around 6’5, 210lbs. He’s just evil. He wants to rule the human race and he doesn’t care how he achieves it. He’ll use murder, manipulation, aggression, and oh, yes, seduction to get what he wants. He is my avatar, btw.

What is the main character's biggest fear?
For the longest time (since her childhood), Eliana has been afraid of the dark. She fears it because of the night terrors she had as a child. At the time, she didn’t truly understand what was happening to her or why, but later, she realized Mavrok was the cause of this. As the story progresses, her fears change. She fears she’ll fail when it comes to her own destiny. The people she meets in a village help her. She never wanted to let Mavrok know, but well, they do share a unique bond and it is hard for her to keep things from him.

3) Who are the other characters?
In the beginning, she has seven other girls she’s practically grown up with and considers to be like sisters to her. Her best friend is named Amisa. She wants nothing more than to free them from their captors, the Sinners. Later, she meets the others in a valley. These people become essential to fulfilling her destiny.
Where did she grow up?
Eliana has grown up in an underground sanctuary, living and being enslaved by the Sinners. Later, she comes across a village and is forced to stay there because of her injuries. At this point, she becomes confused as to where she really wants to be. She still wants to save her sisters, but she grows to love and care for the people in the village as well.
Has she ever been in love?
Awe, poor Eliana has never been in love. In the sanctuary, the sexes are separated and only brought together for one purpose: breeding. She has never really had a real conversation with a male until she meets Tero.

4) What does Eliana want?
Again, her goal changes over time. At first, she only wants to set her sisters free. But once she meets all the people in the village and discovers her destiny, her goals become a bit blurred. Why is this important? Well, it helps the readers realize Eliana isn’t the perfect heroine after all.

5) How does the antagonist stop her from achieving her goals?
Haha, Mavrok does lots and lots of things to confuse poor Eliana. They share a bond after all.

6) What are the results?
We learn about Mavrok’s past, what happened to the Earth, and how all the other characters fit into Eliana’s destiny. All of this slowly builds towards the climax. It builds towards one question: Can Eliana defeat Mavrok?

7) What is the climax?
The confrontation with Mavrok.

8) What is the resolution?
My lips are sealed.

9) What is the theme?
At first I thought my theme was good versus evil, but it's just not as simple as that. I'm pretty sure it is that people are flawed; no one is perfect.

Copyright 2009-2013 Mandy Earles

Oh, and as for your next feature: Well, for me, I'm getting ready to send my novel to agents. I'm worried about writing a query letter and have no idea how to do so. I'm not sure if this is something you are familiar with, but thought I'd throw it out there.

Other suggestions:
:bulletgreen: Common mistakes when writing your first chapter
:bulletgreen: Mixing of genres: Good or bad?
:bulletgreen: Taking Criticism: How to handle it, when is it helpful (constructive) and when is it not. How to respond to negative criticism, (i.e., realizing not everyone will like your story).

Hope this helps :D Thanks again for such a fun feature! :heart:
Reply
:iconningeko16:
Ningeko16 Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
ahahahh awesome! and 10000% true ~
Reply
:iconarurue:
arurue Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Basically, not all of artists are as original as they claimed it to be. They immersed the art they like, and somehow it had made their style is their 'original'.
Reply
:icontyphloser:
Typhloser Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This sounds real fun to enter~

1. Who is the main character?
Her name is Crystal, and have yet to give her a last name.

What kind of distinguishing facial features does your character have?
Crystal's bangs cover the right side of the face. Her hair is blonde, and goes down to her butt. It's straight. Her right eye is blind (caused from scarlet fever), and she retains depth perception. Because her right eye is useless, she let her bangs grow to cover it. Her left eye is blue.

Does your character have a birthmark? Where is it? What about scars? How did he or she get them?
None, as she's a pretty careful girl.

2. Who or what is the antagonist?
(The person, group, or situation causing trouble for the main character.)
Nsanitee, a large entity that has the ability to conjure creatures, objects, and whatever comes across his imagination. His lackey, Minyon, is just as big an antagonist, and has manipulative abilities and can create illusions.

What is your character’s biggest fear? Who have they told this to? Who would they never tell this to? Why?
Crystal's biggest fear is not being able to live up to the expectations people have for her, including defeating the antagonist. She hasn't told anyone about it, and doesn't want to tell her friends as she feels that they might doubt her potential as a hero.

3. Who are the other people in the story?
Her travelling companions are the Celemera, Frisk (who is that 'cute annoying thing' character), and the Machina, Shadow (a tech-savvy reptile with electrical abilities). Other characters would include my story's three main races and their respective leaders, as well as their deities.

Who are your character’s friends and family? Who do they surround themselves with? Who are the people your character is closest to? Who do they wish they were closest to?
Crystal's family doesn't appear in the story- she is separated from her home completely. Instead, Crystal's temporary family consists of her travelling companions. The three become very close to each other.

9. What is the theme?
The theme is unity, and tying up loose ends, as well as forgiving past mistakes.
Reply
:iconningeko16:
Ningeko16 Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
ahaahahaha it's cool but funny cause my oc's name is crstal too.........the journal just proves the theory
Reply
:icontyphloser:
Typhloser Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
If their name's the only similarity...
Reply
:iconningeko16:
Ningeko16 Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
yup you don't have to worry about anything! i read the rest of your comment and our stories are completely different (as far as i know) so you didn't steal my character and i didn't steal yours! (also yours has blond hair covering the right eye due to an illness while mine has silver hair which covers the left side due to the lose of her eye in battle so it's not entrely the same either tee hee :iconinuclapplz:)
Reply
:iconscissorsmei:
sCissoRsmei Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
ahhhh thanks..i have stopped creating stories..or more like hesitated to create another story because I always end up knowing that my story/plot/characters are alike with the someone else's..
Reply
:iconkaisaki1342:
kaisaki1342 Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
1. Riku . Features : Hazel eyes (greenish brown with gold speckle), Rimless and thin rimmed Eyeglasses, A slight scowl look and a devious smile. Black, Medium bob , Messy Hair (for a girl).
2. The fear of feeling alone. She will never tell that to her father though.
3. A tall athletic hardworking girl, and an Air in the head aspiring writer. Story revolves around their interactions and a hyperactive half-sister.
Reply
:iconeearii:
Eearii Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I've recently been freaking out because a lot of my characters hit on, at least to me, cliches. But at the same time I had no idea how to fix them since that's just how they developed.
I'm not really a writer when it comes to books and such, but I have role play characters than I can easily link to most of these questions and the journal overall. With that in mind, I'd still like to answer a few of the questions for one my main characters, Melody.

1. Large, bright green eyes and constant dark circles underneath them. Dyed blue bangs.
2. Death, mostly of others, but also of herself. Has she told anyone? No, not directly, but her best friend picks up on it really easily.
3. Honestly, Melody is a very defensive and isolated person, so her only real friend is from childhood, though she does have two others who fit, in a loose definition, as "friends." She doesn't keep in contact with her father.
4. This one made me really stop, but I think the answer is simply that she doesn't know. She's in her early twenties, so it makes sense.

The rest kind of depend on who I'm role playing with. Interesting exercise, though.
Reply
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