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phantom-semi

eragon and theivery from other books...

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sorry if this has already been discussed by others and if this is now an old subject amongst you all, but i've been reading about eragon by christopher paolini beingmade into a film and how everyone is going crazy about it. it annoys me too much. i dont know if you read them, i dont know whyi did, but eragon and his sequel eldest were both filled with ideas, theories and plots and from other books such as the dragon riders of pern, LOTR, he stole the concept of the true name from a sci fi i cant remember and more importantly the wheel of time.he is also being defended by his fans for the fact that he is a young author.. be that as it may, i think it belittles other authors and fans of the books copied alike. some things from wheel of time i think he took were some plots;

 

the main protanganist of the story living seperately with someone who isnt his family.. and thatfarm subsequently being burned down by his version of trollocs,

the battle for emond field plot, and strategy was copied at length i feel,

what we call fades he calls shades :p

 

those were just a few for sake of giving an example.

 

im sure there are more, i dont wish to bore anybody with other parallels so feel free to add your own, both from WOT or any other series i might have missed.

 

if you've read those books and either agree or disagree please post.

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get off the topic, it just goes on and on for instance CP puts elements of sevral books including WOT, don't me to diss WOT but look at trollroc RJ's orcs. So technicly If CP stole trollrocs and renamed them Urgals, but RJ technicly is using trollrocs which are like orcs, so technicly he was stealing from tolkien not RJ, but then we have the misty mountains in Middle-earth, and the mountains of mist in Randland. So RJ borrowed some elements from Tolkien, there is a thread in debates about Wagner and Tolkien check it out. So Tolkien took from Wagner, but Wagner took from mythology, it is a never ending cycle, books have elements from other books, don't like it, then get over it. Oh yeah us Eragon fans are going crazy about the movie because look at how often a good piece of fantasy gets made into a movie, Lord of the Rings is all for me Harry Potter isn't really my type of fantasy, so yeah were excited.

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your right but those similarites are small enough for me to get over. besides, i agree that both have a race of similar ideas... i.e, a mindless fighting race.. though i think the concept of orcs and trollocs are different. i mean paolini even goes as far as creating a stronger version of urgals (kull i think?) much like tolkiens urak khai (sp?)

 

look i dont want this to get heated.. alls im saying is that i can get over small similarities like trollocs and misty mountains.. but with eragon i found there was too many similarites and i was very short sighted of the author to think he could get away with taking so much from different... to me it basically feels like he ate all the fantasy he liked and what others might like.. crapped it out and we have his books... a big mash of some aspects of good books with an attempt to wind his story through. sorry for the analogy.. but hey.. thats just my opinion.

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Guest cwestervelt

I have never read, nor do I have plans to read Eregon at this time. That leaves me about as unbiased as I can be.

 

It is important to realize there is a difference between borrowing elements (creatures, etc) from a common mythology and borrowing unique plot elements. The first is generally acceptable as they are not a creation of any single author, nor is their usage harming any one. Saying that Tolkien took creatures from Wagner, who took then from mythology is no different than saying that Tolkien took the directly from mythology. Saying that Paolini stole his Urgals also does not constitute plageriasm. He borrowed from the same source used by Wagner, Tolkien, Jordan and countless other writers. His use of "True Names" while not unique, is also not plagiarism is that is also a centuries old mythological concept.

 

Even the openning of Eregon, as described by the original poster of this thread, does not constitute plagiarism. The Eye of the World is not unique in its usage of such a beginning. Many RPG's (Baldur's Gate and Dungeon Siege to name 2 of the most popular) have similar beginnings.

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i wasnt daying that as far as plagiarism... thats quite a silly stand to take on the whole thing. and im sorry i just dont take your argument about the opening and how its doesnt constitute plagiarsm.. it doesnt obviously... but it is obvious that it was largely influenced from WOT. i was just saying that it was obvious that he was letting his influences from other things get too much into his own writing. i also doubt that a 16 year old (thats how old he was when he wrote it?) has enough gumption and vision to research mythology... i do however applaud him for undertaking as large a task as writing these books.. i dont think hes a very good writer as of yet.. though i think its a promising start, and i dont envy any of his success.

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Actually I don't think CP has read WOT, he lists some of his favorite books that inspired him and it's like Ursala Iforgotherlastname, David Eddings, Tolkien and Beowluf, please tell me what you see that is Stole coughbullchoughshi*cough from WOT plus on the whole not enough vision to research mythology, he was homeschooled and graduated at 15, basicly he had nothing else to do but write and he sure had enough time to research mytholgy

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so you say that at the age of fifteen he had the talent and intelligence to research the same types of mythology as lets say tolkien? im not trying to be offensive by saying stuff like that, i just find it hard to believe.

 

fair enough your a fan of books, but please if your going to post an opinion atleast be mature about it... "coughbullcoughshit".. at the end of the day i posted it to hear other peoples points of view not for others to try and belittle me

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fair point... but i still think the depth of mythology to create such lengthy books is beyond that of a fifteen year old.. if not then i stand corrected.

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Who bloody cares? Fantasy, like many genres, has been done so much that it's hard to come up with completely original settings, charachters, etc. I don't care if one author borrows from another. All I care about is whether it's a good story or not. Which the Eragon series is. Which Wheel of Time is.

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good point apollo who does care, it is virtually impossible to have a completely original storyline in fantasy without at least one element that may sound like another story.

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I would have to read it to compare. That said it does matter if it resembles others writing and ideas too closely. There is a very fine line to tread as an author. Many great authors have been guilty of passages and ideas that were too similar and it DID matter. This isn't about whether or not its a good series. You should try to make some more extensive comparisons and give more evidence if its worth bringing up at all though.

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A., Who's to say he couldn't have studied mythology at 15? I have a friend that's been able to spout off almost anything you could ask about it since we were around 13. She started studying it when we were about 8. Geniuses do exist.

 

B., Being picky is all well and fine. But.. if he did borrow a few ideas, who really cares? Like someone said above, it's almost impossible to come up with new things all the time. Every single author is influenced by another, even if they don't admit it or realize it. The only way to NOT be influenced is if you somehow become an author without ever reading a single book. It's like saying horror/mystery writers all copy each other because there's only so many ways to kill someone.

In fantasy, I happen to think borrowing ideas is a good thing. It might be fantasy, but... it makes it more "real," in a sense. We can really identify with the situations/characters... Because it's like a seperate world we're familiar with. The way I see it. Orcs/Trollocs/Urgals. They're pretty much the same, yes. Just different names. To me, that makes the books more real, because... it's almost just like having different races of people in our world. All human, just different colors. Or Elves. Look how many fantasy books have elves. I'm not saying "real" as in, you should believe anything that happens in those books and they could be true. No no. Just real as in, that place in your imagination you can drift off to, heh. This wouldn't be possible if each series somehow could be completely different from any others. I might not be making much sense, but meh.

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i care if people use the same sources to write their books, only because i get frustared when i want to read somethig different.

otherwise, i totally understand.

for example, i keep a dream diary for inspiration for my own writing and last september i was rereading a dream dated a couple of years ago, a couple of months after that i saw an add for 'the island' ....same concept, in fact it was pretty much identical (except all the characters were female).

i was so shocked, i couldnt finish the story.

since then i have discovered there have already been movies like this made, and a book called 'spare parts' was written in the 80s(?) about this exact subject....creepy

 

the most original author i have read in the fantasy genre to date is ian irvine, robin hobb is also up there. tad williams also has a great sci-fi series "otherland" which is long, involved, mostly original and intricate beyond measure for those who are interested.

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Guest cwestervelt
i care if people use the same sources to write their books' date=' only because i get frustared when i want to read somethig different.

otherwise, i totally understand.

for example, i keep a dream diary for inspiration for my own writing and last september i was rereading a dream dated a couple of years ago, a couple of months after that i saw an add for 'the island' ....same concept, in fact it was pretty much identical (except all the characters were female).

i was so shocked, i couldnt finish the story.

since then i have discovered there have already been movies like this made, and a book called 'spare parts' was written in the 80s(?) about this exact subject....creepy

 

the most original author i have read in the fantasy genre to date is ian irvine, robin hobb is also up there. tad williams also has a great sci-fi series "otherland" which is long, involved, mostly original and intricate beyond measure for those who are interested.[/quote']

 

Otherland is another series that requires re-reading to fully follow it. Each book had a synopsis about what went on before hand but all that did was tell my how much I had forgotten.

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Well' date=' look at The Sword of Truth. I don't know who stole from who, but for a while, I thought RJ and TG were one and the same.[/quote']

 

Are you mad? There are some similarities between the two, but WoT is much better written.

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Guest Majsju
for example' date=' i keep a dream diary for inspiration for my own writing and last september i was rereading a dream dated a couple of years ago, a couple of months after that i saw an add for 'the island' ....same concept, in fact it was pretty much identical (except all the characters were female).

i was so shocked, i couldnt finish the story.

since then i have discovered there have already been movies like this made, and a book called 'spare parts' was written in the 80s(?) about this exact subject....creepy

 

[/quote']

 

I've experienced something very similar when I write songs. I often find myself writing some nice riff, or some good lyrics, only that when I record it and listen to it, I recognize the song I "borrowed" it from.

 

It happens to everyone doing something creative, you are always carrying everything you've seen and heard with you, subconsciously. But I don't see anything wrong with borrowing stuff as long as you try to make something original out of it.

 

Something Goodkind will never be able to do.

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about the dream thing, i dreamt it years ago, before i had any knowlege of 'spare parts' or the movie. it think it might have been when i was really into dark angel...it is a similar concept, but shifted from soldiers to workers/spare parts. so from my point of view it was 'original'

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im neutral. taking things from other books ,unfortinatly, has to be done has to be done. for two reasons

1) you cannot make somthing without ideas. most of time that comes from other books, movies, etc.

 

2) sucess may come at a price. somtimes we need to be reminded that. andif taking things helps get us to sucess tan shouldn't we do it?

 

yet, it also get me a bit mad because it means you have not used all of your imagination. it also maens that you have done work but not all that is possible.

most importantly people not take ideas and get the credit that the other rightfully deserves.

 

anybody getting me?

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yeah definatly. it understandable, and even expected, but that doesnt make it any less annoying.

 

everything that you do in your life will influence you in some way, therefore nothing is ever truly original. it all stems from youre experiences, or what you percieve your experiences to be...

 

a notion that i did not invent, only regurgitated...as is the way of things

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Ah originality, the Holy Grail of the creative arts. It's a toughie, sometimes. Especially when you came up with an idea all on your own, and then get told it's been done by people who refuse to believe you weren't influenced by the 'original' product.

 

As for the mythology debate, a friend of mine's little brother (who is also a friend, I guess, being the one of the two siblings more likely to understand my Shakespeare/mythological/LotR references) is absolutely obsessed with mythology. Has been for years. He's fourteen now. We'll all be watching a movie together, or me and his sister will be talking about a book, movie, idea for a story, and he'll just be able to spout some piece of mythology that corresponds to the plot/character/setting in question.

He's heavily into worldbuilding, and does some excellent maps (his other obsession) but rarely gets beyong creating the mythos and geography of his worlds before moving on - he just finds those parts too much fun. Weird kid, but fun. He's a real oldschool nerd. Not a dying breed, but definitely obscured since it became cool to be 'nerdy' in some mainstream circles.

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