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QUESTION:

Do you ever find yourself writing the same elements into your stories? (A good example being the similarities in The Worthing Saga and The Homecoming Series.) If so, would you say that maybe your way of understanding LDS scripture is reforming it into ideas more comfortable, or more personal, to yourself? As I read more and more I wonder if you ever just write something and then later go, "Dang! (That) is so much like (this)."

Please don't take this the wrong way, I really enjoy your stories and am practically wetting my pants waiting for the nest Alvin Maker series book and Shadow of the Hegemon, it's just that a lot of elements in your stories seem to repeat themselves just a little and I would like your opinion.

-- Submitted Anonymously

OSC REPLIES: - August 2, 2000

Because I'm the same person writing all my books, certain concerns are bound to pop up more than once. I hope I put a different spin on them; I certainly don't plan to repeat myself. And if I catch myself getting repetitive, I break the pattern.

At the same time, there are fictional motifs so fundamental that all of us use them. And I'm not even faintly embarrassed about using such tropes again and again. They are the building blocks of stories, and speak from and to our unconscious minds, powerfully and inevitably.

So if I only repeat myself "just a little," I'm probably doing OK <grin>

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