Similar scenes

Hi there. After almost finishing my novel I have since read/watched different media and read/seen some parts of plot or scene that is similar, (in one case very), to my own work. For examples:- 1. A gunfight in a bar where characters take cover behind it for defense. 2. The story is set on a fictional island with its own unique name, but the name is very similar to another fictional island.

I want to be unique but should I worry about it? Should I change such similarities? I just didn't want to get caught up in a Suzanne Collins ripped off Battle Royale. Any help would be appreciated. Many thanks.

Response: In the history of the Western, I doubt you could begin to count the number of gunfights in saloons. And let's face it, the bar is the best cover in that setting.

The fictional island idea goes back as far as Atlantis.

This doesn't mean that you need to avoid these tropes. They will doubtless continue to appear in stories. But it doesn't mean you are plagiarizing, since I'm sure you are writing your own story in your own words.

That said, if you can find a way to put your own twist on the tropes - a way that makes your story better - do it. The fact that the similarities bother you suggests that you want to find a more interesting way to present your story, and that's a great instinct to follow.

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