As can be seen in my previous reviews, I used to have a different system for rating and reviewing books: language/style, characters, plot and originality. Now, I’ve momentarily replaced “originality” with “story” (though I’m considering replacing it with creativity). Why, you ask? Well, someone who keeps up to date with my blog spoke to me recently and said to me “How can you define whether it’s original? I mean, nothing is original anymore.”
It threw me through a loop because…he was right. There is absolutely nothing original anymore.
I then started researching a few articles that people had written about this topic and one in particular stood out to me. It was written on the Business Insider website by Melanie H. Axeman and was titled “Nothing We Do Is Original Anymore, So Find Things Worth Imitating.” She goes on to discuss the fact that humans have been on this planet for hundreds of years and that it is safe to assume that someone must of at some point of time, had the exact same idea or thought that you have had.
“The irony is that nothing we say or do derives from an original place.”
People have begun to have this assumption, or even fear of being unoriginal when in fact, there is no need to have this as nobody is. The question is how you exert your ideas and proclaim them (or create them) for others (or even just yourself.)
So, when looking and reviewing books, especially YA Fiction, it has begun to made me cringe when somebody states that the author has created “an original concept or idea.” I know I, myself, have done it so I’m not judging or criticising anyone. I’m merely stating a new observation I’ve acknowledged and how I mean to develop myself and my own reviews into becoming something a lot more substantial and critical that can help someone grow, instead of praising an idea that, quite honestly, isn’t original at all as someone, somewhere, probably had the same idea at some point.
What people now need, especially in the world of creative writing, is not to be thinking about if or how original their ideas are or whether it is a cliche typical story. They should be thinking about how they are going to execute it and create it into something that is their own. Instead of working mediocrely on an idea to make it ‘original‘, we need to spend more time developing and allowing it to blossom into a creation that we ourselves are proud of and want to attach our names to and that people will remember for time to come.