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Rat Files




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at Files- Who took the cheese?

        "Good writers are like smart rats they know 
           how to take the cheese and run."

2 minutes 2 sec No Skimming

By M. Le' Mont

Austin Kelon,  in his book Steal Like an Artist, said at some
point an artist gets asked the question,  

"Where do you get your ideas?"

The honest artist answers, "I steal them."

Some people collect art, gold, and coins, but as a creative writer
I collect things, which are worth stealing;  ideas, words, phrases,
quotes, drawings, headlines, email subject lines, layouts, or formats.

I collect them so I  can reuse, reshape, and remake, them into
something even more wondrous than the original.... if there
is such a

In the publishing world, the best writers keep  "Swipe Files",
a collection of other people's works and ideas, which they use to 
be creative.    

I prefer to call them "Rat Files", stealing the cheese
out of originality.   

 The Best Artists Don't Care About Originality

History tells us that the best writers know how to steal
from other writers.

"Shakespeare stole from the plays of the writers of his time.
Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde, Thomas Jefferson, and many
others stole from each other.  

The treasure lies in the ideas and works of others; it 
saves time from being original or trying to be an honest thief

Many copywriters steal headlines from the National Enquirer and
Cosmopolitan Magazine and make it their own.  

Steve Jobs said, "good artists copy and great artists steal."  

He went on to say, "We have always been shameless about stealing great ideas."   However, if someone stole from us we're ready to sue.

Everything that is read came from something that was
published before

There is nothing new under the sun that has not been
said or done before.

Every thought stems from a thought proceeding it;
every word or sentence came from another word or sentence
before it; and every idea from another idea that previously sprung forth.

Every cell builds on another cell, and it does not care

Without life before, there would be nothing afterwards.

We are here because our parents came first, and their
parents before

What is Originality?   Undetected plagiarism - William Ralph Inge

Art is theft. -Pablo Picasso

Woody Allen called himself, a shameless thief. 

Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets
deface what they take; good poets make it into something better, or at
least something different.  The good poet welds his theft into a whole of feeling which is uniquely different from that from which it was torn.
-T.S. Eliot

Stop trying to reinvent the wheel

Look to steal something every day, and then use it in a way that
makes it better.
---Austin Kelon

"The only art I'll ever study is stuff that I can steal from."  
-David Bowie

When people call something "original" nine out of ten times
they do not know the references or the original sources
-Jonathan Lethem

Mark Twain said, "it's better taking what does not belong to
you, then to let it lie around

New ideas are words, creatively rearranged.

Has anybody invented a new word or sentence lately?  

When was the last time a new word was added to the
English language?

It has all been used before.

"You can discover yourself, by copying the work of others
and then  finding yourself." -Yohji

Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination.  Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams,random conversations, architecture,
 bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul.  
If you do this, your work (theft) will be
-Jim Jarmusch

"We want you to take from us.  We want you, at first,
to steal from us because you can not steal.  You will
take what we give you and will put it in your own voice,
and that's how you will find your voice, and that's how you
begin.   Then one day someone will steal from you."
-Francis Ford Coppola

It is like searching the internet one thing leads to
another or like a good book that leads to a 
better book.

Just search.... Google something every day to steal. 

"The greatest inventor, is "Accident"- Thomas Edison

Swipe a few good nuggets and throw them in your
 "Rat Files" and you will be glad you did.

Now that was some powerful information.  
If you can stand to read more about stealing
the cheese out of "originality" then go to

The Oath...

Review Examiner #69.    

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M. Le'Mont is  a Writer, Marketing Scientist,
and IBO of 14 websites.

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