Friday, November 19, 2010

PiBoIdMo- Another Word of Advice

Last year during PiMoIdMo, I was obsessed with coming up with another fractured fairy tale. I had dozens of variations on the Goldilocks theme. But I had other fairy tales as well.

Goldilocks and the Three Pirate Bears
Scoldilocks and the Three Naughty Bears
Coldilocks and the Three Eskimo Bears

Okay, I'm kidding. (None of these titles were actually on my list, but I can't keep citing the same examples over and over :)

Anyway, this year I am obsessed with dino-titles.

And after accidentally stumbling upon Brontarina on Amazon (well, Ballet-a-saurus now has to come off my list) I was reminded of how important it is to do research!

There is no such thing as a new idea! This doesn't mean you can't do something that has been done if you put your own unique spin on it, but... it is good to at least know what exists on your topic.

It would be a shame to write a beautifully crafted "Dinosnores" only to discover that there is already a very popular book with that title by the well-known Kelly DiPucchio.


Tess said...

Yes..this is very true. And also a good reminder to write that idea sooner than later because, if you sit on it, someone else will beat you to it.

I speak from sorry experience :/

Megan K. Bickel said...

How do you go about this? Do you just google the subject matter? Go to amazon and search topics? Good tips anyone?

Corey Schwartz said...

Megan, I always start with Amazon!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this tip. I've been wondering about this very thing as I have been brainstorming for ideas for PiBoIdMo. So, Amazon it is! :)

Lydia Kang said...

Funny, I blogged about this once way back when, and I got some comments (not on my blog) that it was silly to do research because there are no unique stories.
Well, basically I agree with you! It's good to know what's out there, so even if you pick a similar theme, you can avoid making the story too much like what's already been done.
Great post!

hytime said...

Wow, you're right.
I googled "dino-soars" for flying dinos. Found plenty.
Even "dino-sores" -- like, for dinosaurs with psoriasis, or something dermatological -- lots of entries.
I may try "dinosour" -- made with lemon juice, whisky, powdered suger and a teaspoon on dino.

Rebecca Gomez said...

I often google my title ideas to get an idea of whether it's been done or not. But if I do find something similar, sometimes I go for it anyway, depending on the type of book I find, etc.

Anonymous said...

I like Dinosnores. I must admit I had a great idea for a title the other day, no huge plot for the story just a great title. I daren't look on Amazon yet, it's mine, it's mine! Good luck with PiBoldMo

Tana said...

So true! It's a huge nightmare to find out the story you've been nurturing has already been done! Ack! We need to make our spin on an old idea original.

DL Curran said...

Great point. I did research on a non-fiction I've been working on... fortunately some to prove there's an audience, but none with my spin. Now, fingers crossed I can interest someone... :)

Thanks for stopping by! :D

Rachael Harrie said...

Great tip Corey. Am popping it in my Twitter Tip Thursday this week (*grins*)


Anonymous said...

Ha, Brontarina and Dinosnores both sound funny. Dinosaurs never go out of style (well, according to that "if I could publish a book" post), so if you find a dinosaur spin that hasn't been taken yet, go for it!

Joanne R. Fritz said...

Great post, Corey. And so true. Last summer, I spent a lot of time writing a picture book I thought was totally unique. Then I looked it up on Amazon and found out there already was a book with that title (and a similar theme).

The late Sid Fleischman said "nothing is wasted but the paper." So at least it was a writing exercise. And I might be able to use those characters or that setting in a different picture book.

Back to the drawing board... And PiBoIdMo is giving me plenty of new ideas.

Ishta Mercurio said...

Oh, this is so true. And boy, have I felt the sting of not-enough-research!

Here's a question for you: if you find a book with a similar theme, and maybe even the same title, but it's obscure, 25 years old, and out of print, do you worry about it and skip on your current new idea, or do you go ahead with your idea? This is my current problem with a pretty-much-there WiP, and I just can't decide what to do with it.