They Can't Duplicate You
I've noticed that a lot of stories today, and blogs, are almost a test. They are done to dip your toe in the water. But I've noticed that a lot of the writers are writing stories that are the same as other writers.
This is good to start out, to test your story telling capabilities, but at what point do you shift into a different gear and start writing really individual stories? Where do you learn your voice and create a world for yourself? Sort of like Stephen King usually puts things about The Dark Towers and bits of that world into some of this other stories. Or how Emenem and other music artists have a world of certain characters that parade around their work. Korn came to be known for the bad things that happened to the lead singer and other little characters and voices that he sang as. Dean Koontz usually has a dog and lots of guns in his stories. I'm throwing these things out randomly, but hopefully you get the point. There is a style, a sound, a feeling you get from certain artists that others just can't replicate.
I would say that's why I've heard that people can't really rip off your ideas, because if you do them in your voice and your vision, they can't replicate that. It's yours. So use your own judgment, but one shouldn't be too worried about showing your story around.
Of course, you probably want to get your novel-length stories copyrighted, or at least do the mailing-to-yourself thing--just incase. But for the most part, especially if you are a very prolific writer, you should be ok. They can't duplicate you.
What do you think? Comment below.