All of a sudden, everyone wants to be a writer….everyone has a story to tell. But, not everyone’s story is original. As I look around in the various Facebook groups for would-be authors, I see the same stuff…same storylines but different titles. It is important for a writer to have his or her own identity; their own style…their own something that separates them for the rest; from the wanna-be’s. I have read plenty of books from unknown authors and knew immediately who was their biggest influence in their style of writing. It is one thing to learn from and take bits and pieces from another successful author but for the love of God don’t copy! Be yourself. Write from the only perspective that you know-YOURS! You can only be you. Just because you love Anne Rice does not mean you should write like Anne Rice. Just because you are a fan of Stephanie Meyer you should write a story that involves vampires that glitter in the sunlight. Unfortunately, when an author is successful enough to write a story that goes from the bookshelf to the big screen agents all over the globe scout for authors with similar storylines (such as Hunger Games versus Divergent) just so that they too can have a piece of the pie. I could never be Zane, or K’Wan or Eric Jerome Dickey or L.A. Banks and even if I were to even attempt to do so that does not guarantee success. Their success is their own, not mine. Creativity means originality…authenticity. I am not trying to be the next J.R. Ward, I want to be me. I want my own title. I love their work but I love mine more despite the fact that I am unpublished. If you know who you are there will never be room for comparison. Story telling is a gift that should not be taken lightly. It is no different than singing: you either have the vocals or you don’t. And, unfortunately there are too many “writers” who simplify the craft to nothing more than a money making opportunity; or an attempt to satisfy some delusional fantasy of making the New York Times bestselling list. But who am I to judge?