“Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.” – T.S. Eliot
Take things that are good, make them better. Find something that is one way, and make it another way. Flip, reorganize, adjust, re-face. Improve. Nothing is static. Probably nothing is original. Nothing is absolute. The world is fluid, and can be remade. We can renew and restore. We should renew and restore. We should make good better. We would avoid making bad worse.
How I learned to write was basically my love for writing and reading, and I would try to emulate the writers that I loved, and I tell people that. I can’t sit down and explain to someone how to write a sentence, but I tell people to read a lot of good sentences until they’re basically in your bones and you can create one yourself. We talk craft and I’ll point things out, like “isn’t this an incredible image?” or, “look at these great choices the writer made.”
– Cheryl Strayed
It’s great and all to tell people to be original, to think things up for themselves, and not to copy or plagiarize. But we learn from what we see. We develop from what we know. We are inspired to create original works be reading/seeing/watching/copying other’s original works. Everything is inspired, and everything can be inspiring.
Take something that is good, and make it better. If you thought of it by yourself, and no one else is doing it, rock on.