When your story is already written

Oh my word, do I feel a little taken aback. I am 4,5000 words into my new WIP – The Devil’s Breath (WT), when I began reading a novel I bought the other week.

For clarification, I’ve never read anything by this author and I picked it because I wanted to read more authors in the crime thriller genre. So imagine my horror when I began reading the story and thinking, hmm a bit similar to my WIP. Anyway, I continued with my work and then today, I picked up the novel only to find that my story was far too similar.

My protagonists are different – fortunately – so I can keep them but I’ll have to change the crime scenario. I had chosen to write about young offenders as my last job was working as  forensic mental health nurse in a youth offending team – so it’s a subject close to my heart and something I know a fair bit about.

However, none of the above would hold up in court if I were being sued for plagiarism, hence I have my thinking cap on to change the plot so that it stands as my own piece of work.

Has this happened to anyone else, and if so, what did you do?

Happy Word Flow One & All