it has been brought to my attention by a few people, even after i have approached this artist about not seeking to write in my same exact style with my same exact creative dna, that they continue to persist in doing so. i understand as artists we find inspiration in each others work. i understand that folks will find inspiration in my work, and that may sometimes translate into adopting some things. i think as artists we do this as we journey into the voyage of our own voice and creativity. and so. i sought to make peace with how closely this artist chooses to model their work next to mine as best i could. then most recently, this poem was shown to me. i had a visceral response. because it was like looking at my own writing. like looking in a mirror. this artist is now utilizing my exact phrasing and usage regarding the period- the only punctuation i use in my writing (besides the rare comma or parentheses). using the period after the first word. or as a comma. as a way to highlight a word or passage. to stop and restart in mid sentence. and also as a double meaning. is a very unique birthmark of my work. it is not something that is utilized by many, if any, here on tumblr. i will say, it is not something i have seen anyone else do (even this artist, as we did follow one another at one time). this does not mean i am the only one to have ever done it on the earth. i say this to say, i am the first poet i know of here in the tumblr writing community/ or that i have come across in reading others. and with my work having become very visible here, along with how closely their writing resembles mine, i have come to the conclusion that this artist is highly invested in continuing in this manner of adopting my creative identity and structure into their work in a way that is boundary crossing, consistent, and unsettling. here is my concern, as a new writer in the world at large, it is important that my creative identity be associated with me. as it is mine. my breath. my expression of craft. my energy. if this artist continues to adopt my lingual and grammatical usage so closely, and publishes work that so deeply mirrors mine, how will readers know whose is what. or who this specific style originated from. how will they know that the structure and bones of writing that come from my being. are mine. what i have honed and birthed. also, how long will this continue with this artist. and will it end. i understand that this is social media. i understand that people are inspired. i understand that others do not hold my beliefs around creativity, art, and respect for the artist. but when does someone mirroring your art/ your work so closely, cross the the line and become infringement of your work. - nayyirah” (via nayyirahwaheed)
This is the most self-involved bullshit about writing style in poetry that I have ever read. Over the use of a period? Plagiarism is one thing, but the use of a period? Please excuse all other writers now for nayyirah waheed has a claim on the fucking sentence fragment
creative boundaries are a reality. plagiarism is a reality. and yes the use of a period in writing, just like any other tool in art, matters. how we use these tools as artists, are our signature to the world. to you be your way, to me be mine.
It makes me said to see this have to go down between fellow creatives. As much as I appreciate both solve-coagula and nayyirahwaheed, Nayyirah’s right, the use of periods, commas, and sentence fragments, especially in the specific and hallmark way that Nayyirah is known for using them, is a tool. And if Della Hicks-Wilson is now all of a sudden using those same periods and fragments in that same way, Nayyirah’s saying she believes it may not just be taking notes from her, but something more. No one can claim a sentence fragment as their own, but the way Nayyirah uses them is very distinct and very her own, and for Della to be writing in the same exact way Nayyirah does goes beyond just adopting some of other creatives’ practices. Nayyirah’s not accusing, condemning, or demanding that anyone, or Della, stop or start doing anything, she’s bringing up a topic she thinks is important for the whole of creative society on here and as a rule for creatives in general, and I think she was right in how she approached what she sees to be this issue (and I think she’s right, it is an issue.)
Steups. So sick of this petty bullshit. Fighting down for the usage of a period. Well yes. Jackasses all of you. You should feel a sense of pride that your writing has influenced and inspired others like the great roman poets of old used to before hand. Get a grip. Writing is an artform that cannot claim specific ownership. It is forever available for readers to be inspired by. Y’all need a fucking reality check. If you don’t want to inspire people stop posting your bloody writing.(via one-valhalla)
no. to being juxtaposed with the literary ‘manners’ of the ‘great’ white roman writers. no to theft as inspiration. no to death of the artist. no to an artists work not belonging to the artist, but to the world. no to total lack and disregard of the artist. no to total disrespect of the artist. none of these interest me. none of these are a truth to me. none of these are valid or legitimate ways of addressing or honoring art. to me. and as this is MY work, and MY experience, how i feel about the plagiarism of MY work, is the only and most important voice in the matter. how i feel is complete. your acceptance, approval, or validation are not necessary.(via nayyirahwaheed)
You are one of the greats my love. Or at least you are becoming one. I apologize for my harsh response. But still. There will come the time where you will have to accept this. That you and your writing. Influences others to become great. No. They should not plagiarize your work. That is in itself wrong. They can however choose to follow the precedent you have so wonderfully set. I am sorry you feel this way. But I hope one day you will understand that you’ve opened doors, opened eyes and minds. You are an inspiration. Be proud of that. Don’t chastise them for stealing your style. Instead ask them and yourself: what was so profound abt the way I wrote that made them/ you want to mimic it. And if you can’t do that. Well say what. You’ll always see them as a theif and you the one unfairly stolen from instead of the one blessed with being able to reach another mind and show them a way that they couldn’t reach their own.(via one-valhalla)
to you be your way. to me be mine.(via nayyirahwaheed)
"Be proud people admire you so much they are willing to steal from you."
This is completely ridiculous. When you love someone’s work, you may admire them. You may become inspired. But that does not give you the right to steal their style. That is disrespectful and if that is the only way you know how to love I feel sorry for you.
I have taken a hiatus recently from the world of tumblr as I found myself becoming too opinionated on topics I had no right to weigh in on, however the exchange above really riled me. Firstly being mimicked or copied is a very painful experience and this is not just in writing, as a scientist when other scientists use similar experimental designs, or lay out aims like you, or even just borrow the way you present your work for publication, it is painful. And this is a scientific community where I would love people using the results and inferals that I concluded upon in their own work (with citations or recognition).
The claim that somehow Nayyirah’s desire to have her own voice and style to be explicitly hers something egotistical, is unfounded, unwarranted and most dangerously unsympathetic. I think cynicism and criticism becomes such a big way that people get their voices heard on a forum quintessentially based upon your opinions that it dulls people’s ability to critically evaluate and sympathise with posters. Your voice is yours, your style of writing is as unique to you as a fingerprint is, we all have experienced life differently, we have all read books that even if similar are not exactly the same and so whilst complete originality is impossible the want for somebody to not steal your writing style (that’s what we are discussing here not inspiration) is a very reasonable desire.
Personally, I sympathise with you Nayyirah, I understand how infuriating it must be for somebody to write like you and how that must be amplified because language, words and prose are your work, they are your passion your love and arguably they make up a very big piece of you. I think that whoever is writing as you should figure out that whilst some writing moves you to mimic is disingenuous to the poet who’s work you loved and secondly to your own voice. Anyway that’s my two cents.(via phantom-pupil)
Yes yes and yes.
Being an artist is not synonymous with consenting to theft.
The thing with imitation is that it is essentially a theft of your essence. Because it is theft of something intangible, unless you have fallen prey to it you don’t understand it. An artist’s signature is their creative autonomy. Often as artists, creative autonomy is all that we have outside of the work that we produce. It’s like someone stealing an invisible child. It cuts deep. Keep writing sis. Salt is out there - from what I gather it has taken years to find your voice but now that your voice has found you it’s not going anywhere. Keep producing. Your work speaks for itself and people recognise your spirit within your signature. Some people are essence suckers with vampiric tendencies. The universe is telling you to pray for her. People who do this regularly have not made peace with who they are and are therefore comfortable with theft. It’s one thing experimenting in order to find your voice but to model your voice on the voice of another is something else entirely. Keep doing you. Sending love.(via missmarysmusings)
Making a name for yourself and carving your own lane isn’t easy and it’s frustrating when somebody steals your artistic style, even literary style. It’s ok to be inspired - to be given life but to imitate and mirror someone’s style to the point where it’s indistinguishable is a form of theft and not complimentary. Salt and where it came from is very important.
peace loves :)))
it started slowly, but now it’s official !!! i am working on a second book to be released this summer. June/ July 2014. i am soooo excited, it’s coming along so beautifully, and i can’t wait to share it. unlike salt. (and now that I have this publishing process under my belt) upon its release date, it will be available on createspace. amazon us/uk/europe. kindle. itunes/ibooks. and nook simultaneously. unfortunately, createspace and amazon, kindle, nor nook offers pre-ordering options for self publishing. but, itunes/ibooks does. which i will be utilizing. i may be quieter here on tumblr in the next few months, but just know it’s because i’m in the kitchen puttin’ my foot in it, working on a feast :)))
I turned night
Heal my bones.
into raw tenderness.
Healing -Tapiwa Mugabe, tapiwamugabe.tumblr.com(via tapiwamugabe)
Some afternoons were made for lonely walks with your past
To lead it to down a river
Drown it in broad day light
It after all doesn’t mind reminding you how broken you are every 4 a.m
All she wanted
was find a place to stretch her bones
A place to lengthen her smiles
and spread her hair
A place where her legs could walk
without cutting and bruising
A place unchained
She was born out of ocean breath.
I reminded her;
‘Stop pouring so much of yourself
into hearts that have no room for themselves
Do not thin yourself
You do not bring the ocean to a river’