marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,
marycatelli
marycatelli

ideas have consequences

and not just in the real world!


Sometimes when you run off, squeaking in celebration, with the stolen idea slung over your shoulder, you've brought your world-building with it.  And since character is plot, you may have brought both of them as well -- or at least limiting constraints on either.

The filing-off-serial-number process can do something to alleviate that -- sometimes.  Switching genres or locations may also help -- but it may also make it impossible.

Even if you can switch the genres, you may have to lug along other attributes.  Take a story where, during a rout, a son leads his troops to rescue his father, cut off by the enemy forces.  There is a certain amount of social status imputed in that action.  Perhaps the troops can be filed off, and the son made a wizard who arrives with fireballs and lightning blasts, to deal with a flock of ice eagles, but perhaps not.  Even if it can be done, it shows there was a deep commonality that couldn't get removed:  the son had to have power to pull such a stunt off.  Taking the notion of a rescue means taking the notion of ability for the rescuer with it.

Then, that it has consequences has, on the other side, something to start the world-building, or character development, or plotting with.  Always nice not to have to imagine everything.
Tags: families: parent/child, filing off serial numbers, genre, idea development, inspiration, world-building: social classes
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