Book Discussion: Should Authors “Leave Stuff” For Everyone Else To Write?

bd; leaving books rrSo this one is more of a book-and-writing discussion but as I don’t yet have a writing discussion post I thought it best to go for it here. This one springs up from Rick Riordan’s new book, Magnus Chase and the Sword of Summer (which, by the way, I am super excited about and I nearly flipped when I got an email from Waterstones saying that my book had been shipped! Eeeeeek!!!! IT’S SIGNED!!! *ahem*).

Riordan has used Greek, Roman, Egyptian and now Norse myths in his humorous and entertaining novels, featuring teenage protagonist and aimed at the YA audience. His books are loved around the world (I completely adore them, too). And to be honest he could churn out book after book and I’m pretty sure most people would read them.

My friend, Jenny, when we were talking about Magnus Chase, said, “I love Rick Riordan, but I wish he’d leave some myths for other people to use.” (Or words to that effect.) I kind of agree. I adore the Greek and Roman histories and myths, and I do kinda wish I’d had the chance to write them, too.

But here’s the thing. There’s countless retellings of Cinderella, countless reboots of old myths, so is there really a problem if an author uses lots and lots of the old myths? Should they have to leave them, too?

What do you think? And do you like re-reading many different myths of the same thing from different authors? Is this topic really controversial? (Probably.)

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