Have you ever come up with an idea you thought was brilliant, only to find that someone did it first?
As most of you know, I’ve been working on a new book for my Media Bistro class. The story is about a 12-yo boy who gets struck by lightning and then can hear people’s thoughts. His father is a detective and they end up tracking down this crime.
So last week I picked up a pile of books from my favorite sixth-grade reader. She’s very into paranormal and insisted that I needed to read these titles. I pulled out Evermore by Alyson Noël and read it over the weekend.
Pissed. Me. Off.
Let’s face it. Hearing the thoughts of every single person around you could be more of a curse than a blessing. One of the things I have my MC do when he doesn’t want to hear people’s thoughts is crank the iPod. And what do you think Alyson Noël had her MC do when she doesn’t want to hear people’s thoughts? Yeah. Crank the iPod.
It would be bad enough if this was a self-published title that maybe 200 people read. But no. This is a #1 NY Times Bestseller. And she stole my idea.
Okay, she didn’t steal my idea. And I didn’t steal it from her either. She just got there first. Which makes me want to cry.
Fortunately, my more rational side realizes that it’s also an opportunity. Obviously the iPod thing was too easy. So now I have to dig deeper, be more creative, find something that makes just as much sense but hasn’t already been done. It’s a challenge. I think I’ll be up for it.