Thursday, December 15, 2011

Cassy’s Corner- But, That’s My Story!

Before I launch on today’s post, I want to let you know I’m on an airplane and might not be able to check in as much as I would like. I am writing this a week before it actually shows up. Please don’t let my appearance of disappearance keep you from leaving your notes on the site. I will check in as I can.

Last week my husband and I watched a fun film by Wendy Wasserstein. We both fully enjoyed it. I think Wasserstein was a fantastic writer. I’m not going to tell you the name of the movie for that will possibly derail the point of this blog. As we were watching it, I kept saying, “That’s my plot. Or part of it.” “Oh my God, that’s so close to what I’m writing.” Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m no Wendy Wasserstein. But, I sat there thinking how my wip was so close to this story. And, I’d never seen the movie before or knew anything about it.
It’s been said many times that there really are no new stories left to tell. They’ve all been done and the trick is to put a slightly different spin on the tale. Maybe true. Yet it was odd to sit in my living room and watch 80% of what I’ve written play out on the screen.
The flip side of that is, “Wow! If someone at Wasserstein’s level can do this, maybe my story isn’t all that bad.” I don’t have the exactly same characters. I don’t have the finesse she mastered. I don’t have the punch lines just right. Though, I’m working on it. Yet, there was a certain satisfaction in seeing “my” work on our flat screen TV.
It got me thinking. It actually empowered me. It made me want to go upstairs to my office an open the file on my computer. No, I have no interest in copying Wasserstein. I never started out to do that. Again, I’d never seen this work before. What it did do was validate my writing. Wherever we can find those moments that increase our confidence, reassure that our stories are worthy, and spur us on—I say go for it.

Thank you, Wendy.


Liz Lipperman said...

I know what you mean, Cassy. There is a popular drama series on TV right now with a good bit of my plot on book 3 in it. (Not mentioning names for the same reason you didn't. I write mysteries and have to keep you guessing.)And no, it wasn't on TV when I started my story. Don't forget, I plot BEFORE I start writing.

You got it right when you said there are only so many plots out there. It's up to us to put a different spin on it.

Have fun wherever you are.

Anita Clenney said...

Cassy, I've done the same thing. It's kind of disturbing and thrilling at the same time when you see something that resembles your story on TV. Use that inspiration and run with it. Happy traveling!

Cassy Pickard said...

Folks, thanks for checking in. I'm finally home- I won't list the cities I've been in this week. I apologize for my delay in responding. The WiFi in the Rome airport was done.

Characters and plots are so personal it is both disturbing and gratifying to read or see them acted out under someone else's pen. But, we are still the story tellers. We can create our imaginary worlds as we wish.