At our writers’ group meeting a couple of weeks ago we were talking about brilliant ideas we’d had that were tragically developed by other people.
I, for example, had this brilliant idea in the mid-90s about a computer programmer who finds out he’s living in a computer simulation… and then, a couple of years later, the Wachowskis came out with The Matrix. Even friends of mine said, “Richard, that movie could have come straight from your brain.”
Then there was the time in high school that I came up with the idea of a great pirate-oriented role-playing game, complete with magic and sorcery and intrigue and so on in the New World. I let the idea go, but started toying with it again in college. Then along comes some schmoe who invents the game 7th Sea, which is exactly what I had in mind myself.
And, of course, there was the time when I was a kid in the 80s that I came up with an idea for a guy who built a time machine out of a car…
Well, of course, I never wrote that story.
They say that there are not that many original ideas around, so what’s important is the individual writer’s execution of the idea. I could still write down my story about humans trapped in an AI’s reality simulation, but I’d have to finagle it pretty heftily to avoid comparisons with That Film.
On the other hand, don’t let the fear that someone has already executed your idea stop you from putting your own spin on the story. I do, in fact, feel that some of my ideas of the computer simulation of reality that could perhaps be distinguishable from The Matrix. Of course, I doubt I’ll ever get to it because of other projects I want to work on, but, well, one never knows.
This mediocraty brought to you by the A-Z Blogging Challenge. There is no spoon.