Suspend Your Disbelief

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An idea is worth… Three MILLION dollars


Image credit: Flickr - aresauburn

I am selling my story that I have been creating for 10+ years. (not constantly writing, but of piecing everything together in a cohesive manner) It can be compared to stories like Star Wars, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Matrix, Indiana Jones and other titles in those categories. This is a really great story I have. This story needs to be completed by a professional writer or Ghost Writer. I am by no means a writer.

Thus begins a recent listing on eBay. The item up for auction? Not the story, but the story idea. The listing continues:

I will share my story with someone in person only and not over the internet. My story is too valuable to be spread publicly and will give a lot of new ideas for movies and book series that should belong to the buyer. […]

This story will bring in endless fame and money to anyone who takes it. I do not have money to hire a Ghost Writer and I do not want to die with this story untold.

If you win the auction; we would meet in person, you would sign a nondisclosure document so i can be protected if you back out, I would share the story. Then you would choose to keep the story or refuse it. If you refuse it you would get a 100% refund and I would be protected so that you can’t use my story after backing out.

The starting bid? A mere $3,000,000. Yes, you read that right: THREE MILLION DOLLARS. The seller also offered the option to “Buy It Now” for just $10,000,000. Unfortunately for us slowpokes, the auction was ended last week by the seller “because the item is no longer available.”

This auction demonstrates one of the biggest misconceptions about writing: that the idea is the most valuable part of any project. True, the idea is important—but even more important is how that idea is executed. Beginning writers (and non-writers) often assume that once you have an idea, you’re good to go. But in reality, top-notch writing can save, or at least dignify, a mediocre idea. An excellent idea, on the other hand, almost never makes up for poor writing.

Then again, perhaps we’re just not the intended audience for this auction. The seller concluded his listing with the following disclaimer:

And for the people reading this post who think I’m crazy for asking this amount of money for it; this kind of money is a drop in the bucket for large corporations. If it sounds like too much money then you are not the kind of buyer I’m looking for.


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