Friday, April 3, 2015

Copy Catting, Thoughts on Plot Holes and

I have been quite blessed to grow up in a family that is very much into the arts. My parents and my five siblings and I all have pleasant discussions on literature, music, and movies.

However, I have gotten to the point where I simply cannot watch movies with two of my brothers. I can barely even talk about books with them.

My brothers love to shatter stories.

They think that it is their life's mission to point out and exaggerate plot holes in absolutely every story they ever encounter. These boys could probably find a plot hole in the Bible. This is so frustrating to me, because I just so desperately want to believe in everything. I fall in love with characters, I breathe the air that they're breathing, I feel their hearts shattering, their joy consuming their's all so real to me.

Another thing my dear brothers do is point out how many stories (whether it's movies or books) mimic another work. Nothing annoys me more when they start on how they believe that Harry Potter is just a retelling of Lord of the Rings.


Within all stories, there is the over-all (or under-lying) theme of Good vs. Evil. It's in Lord of the Rings, Narnia, Harry Potter, Divergent, Hunger Games, everything. That theme is the core theme of our very existence. So, of course, aspects of all these stories are going to be the same.

Additionally, what is the difference between being inspired by and copy catting? There is a very thin line between the two, I believe. However, I think they are both distinguishable though it is a case-by-case basis sort of thing.

My sophomore English teacher once said, "It is the reader's job to believe in the universe that the author creates." Of course, it's the author's job to create a believable universe, but we readers must give enter into the story and suspend disbelief. Perhaps it is better to say that the author's job is to make the unbelievable believable. Just the same, the reader must discard all he thinks he knows and enter into the creation of the writer. As readers, we must not let things like desperately searching for plot holes and blame for copy catting deter us from entering into the writer's story.


  1. I read recently that even J.R.R. Tolkien was inspired by a few plots from other stories he read and created his novels that way. It's hard to not be inspired by other writers and gain similar ideas, but we have to be careful to make sure the execution is original and not copy them. Great post!

    1. Exactly, like everyone was inspired by someone else...and so true. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  2. Visiting from A/Z. I had to laugh about your brothers and your comment about them finding a plot hole even in the Bible (which I highly doubt, but I like your humor). So true with the concept of the theme of good versus evil in stories, movies, whatever. I remember a pastor telling that as part of something he was preaching about and then thinking of things I had seen or read and I'm like "yep, that's true." I do hope you and your brothers can find a few good movies to watch together where they can keep quiet and enjoy the movie and the time spent together :) Enjoy the rest of the challenge!


  3. Here's a series of books I stumbled upon recently that you may enjoy. They are inspired by the old fairy tales. The series - The Fairy Tale Series editor is Terri Windling.

  4. That's like someone who talks all throughout a movie or gives away the ending before you see it. Oh that would drive me mad!

  5. Brothers. They just don't have as much fun as you do. :) (I'm enjoying your blogs, BTW)

  6. I'm with you on this one, Annie. I get SO defensive when people try to find faults in my favorite books. Like, no. Just stop. MY BOOKS ARE PERFECT.

  7. I read somewhere that all art is discretionary stealing. :) I mean, God came up with the best story ever, so I think we're all drawing from that, right?
    Someone asked the author Neil Gaiman if he thought J. K. Rowling based HP off one of his characters who had glasses and unruly black hair...and some other similarities, I guess. He answered that if she'd been stealing she would have changed it more, and that they were both just stealing plots and characters from T. H. White's The Once and Future King, anyway. :)