The whole concept of originality is now … officially dead. You don’t meet new ideas and new characters.
In his lectures on creative writing, William S. Burroughs echoes Mark Twain’s contention that “all ideas are second-hand, consciously and unconsciously drawn from a million outside sources,” Alexander Graham Bell’s assertion that “our most original compositions are composed exclusively of expressions derived from others,” young Virginia Woolf’s observation that “all the Arts … imitate as far as they can the one great truth that all can see,” and Annie Dillard’s admonition that trying to be original is a mistake because “everything’s been written.”
Pair with Austin Kleon’s Steal Like an Artist.(via explore-blog)