What’s unique about your book?

On April 18, 2011 by Aimee

What makes a story unique?

Apparently, the statement about snowflakes that no two are alike, is a myth. The fingerprints from identical twins are often similar, but not exactly the same. Some say, to the naked eye, they could be confused. Same for DNA … only the DNA of identical twins is so close it might be mixed up (but only might).

When it comes to books, the sky’s the limit, right?

Well, there are only ‘x’ number of genres:

  • Fantasy
  • History
  • Literary
  • Mystery
  • Romance
  • Thriller

And, yeah, a bunch of others, too, probably, but let’s say there are a dozen ‘classifications’ for a book. Inside those are some sub-classifications.

Then, some say there are only ever twenty different plot lines, too.

If all this is true, how do we make a unique story? How can we create a unique hook to an age-old, simply classified story? How can mine be anything new and different than the last person who wrote paranormal romance?

Good question! I’m so glad you asked. 🙂

Here’s my take.

Just like every photographer brings a unique style to his/her work, so to, do authors. As a photographer, I use the same equipment as about 50% of the industry (Canon). So shouldn’t that mean we all create the same thing? No! Not at all. It’s how we pose people. How we make them react to our antics in an effort to catch the right expression. The equipment captures. The photographer makes the moment.

Same goes for writing. Take on genre. One plotline and a dozen authors …. we’ll all write something completely different. Some of it will be awesome. Some of it will be a copy. Some of it will be so startling and new no one will understand it.

All the stories will reflect something within us.

Since we humans are all unique enough to have our own DNA and our own fingerprints, we’ll create a story that is unique, too.

What’s so unique about my stories?
Well … just like in photography, I follow a few simple rules, but I do things my way. Remember, now … I’ve already written 7 novels (yes, 7 and numbers 8, 9, 10 and 11 are all planned).

So, today, here is a sneak peek into my world of writing and what I see as the unique aspect to my stories.

  1. All my stories are set in Rune, NC. Huh? Where’s that? Well, it’s a fictitious town that is a combination of my current town, the town I lived in 25 years ago and a few key places around the state that I’ve squished together. It’s my made up world taking the best of the beach, mountains, plains, my town, the big city closest to me and some other elements I shall keep secret until the book comes out, and morphing them into one.
  2. Every one of my books shares at least one character. The main characters change in almost every story, but I pull in someone from another story, somewhere along the line. That character might have a minor mention or a full part.
  3. I share, but build upon the world. Since my books revolve around the same area, I am slowly but surely building a picture of that entire town. Road by road. Tree by tree. Business by business. Keeping track of who does what, where and when has been a challenge, but a fund one.

Is this completely unique to other authors? Maybe. Maybe not. I love to find an author I can read every book of because it feel familiar … I have some sort of connection with them. So when I began writing, that internal element bled into my stories and I now have all 7 connected in some way — be it by the town, a location in the book, the cross over from youth to adult and/or the characters themselves.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little tidbit of insight. 🙂 Now, tell me … what’s unique about your writing?