All novels are sequels; influence is bliss.

Michael Chabon describing all fiction as a form of fan fiction in his book of essays, Maps and Legends: Reading and Writing Along the Borderlands

I get this—this idea that everything we write is repetitive—that all new ideas grow out of old ideas, that my life is in some way a reliving of Adam’s life, of Christ’s life.

Certainly, we can grow beyond the borders established by others; we can find uncharted lands. But we grow into those places because others began the journey for us, because we can rely on the work of others to carry us to the edges of knowledge and experience. When we take that next step, we expand the world of the known and carry the next generation just a little further into the deep.