New answers tagged

0

Okay, using William Shakespeare as an example is bad. First off, he has been for centuries and this makes it harder to gauge his authenticity as a writer. Who could say William Shakespeare retold "Romeo and Juliet" ? Do you see how bad your example is without an historical account or anecdote? Use something more contemporary cases like Mother of the ...


1

TL;DR: There is a spectrum of copying from regular story-telling that re-uses ideas and themes, to plagiarism, to copyright infringement. These are not all the same and only the last is illegal. The concept of plagiarism is not clearly defined. There is a spectrum of idea-borrowing and word-for-word copying that exists and some of it is acceptable, but if ...


0

George RR Martin created the entire A Song of Ice and Fire because of the War of Roses. So did William Morris, I think he used a battle between the Romans and Gauls, I can't remember. Correct me if I'm wrong anybody. Anyways, using history is very common among writers. It's actually something most will encourage you to do. Just don't be dishonest with your ...


3

We don't. It's a blurred line and a fortune in legal costs on arguing where it lies. Of course there is a classification, but the lines are always blurred. On the "white side" there's alluding - when you make your own characters, but draw specific parallels, exploring what-if's of the other work, mocking its shortcomings, or referencing its most brilliant ...


0

Legally, there have probably been millions of words written on the ramifications of this question for the law of every nation that has laws on the subject at all. Historically, Shakespeare didn't just get away with it because he was brilliant but because the laws and customs of Elizabethan England did not have any more than an embryonic concept of ...


2

First point, as Lauren Ipsum indicated, be very, very careful about taking a living person as your model. Taking a dead person as your model could also give you problems if that person was a writer (a category which could include people primarily famous for other reasons), and his or her writings are still in copyright. Whether this (putting in-copyright ...


3

There are probably lots of names and titles that are coincidentally repeated in multiple books. To take a silly extreme, if someone tried to sue saying "He had a character in his book named John, and I have a character in my book named John. He's stealing my character name!", I can't imagine the courts would let that go very far. You can own a trademark in ...


3

Within reason, if the name itself is not already instantly recognizable (Bart Simpson, Lara Croft, James Bond), you can probably get away with using it. "Trent Steele" may be generic enough. Similarly, there are only so many variants and arrangements of organization and darkness, so whatever you come up with has probably been used or alluded to elsewhere. ...



Top 50 recent answers are included