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Ideaifying Pt 2: The Brainening

Last week I talked about ideas and waxed a little poetical about how easy they were to come up with. This week I want to continue on a short series I’m calling “Ideaifying.”  For the next few posts I want to take a small nugget of an idea and flesh it out until we have a story. In doing so I hope to shed a little light on how I come up with ideas, or at least one method I employ to come up with said ideas.

Last week I also pulled up a website and looked at the word of the day. That word was Evanesce. I want to take the word and flush it out into more of a fully-formed idea.

From Dictionary.com:

Evanesce means “to disappear gradually; vanish; fade away.”

I love this word. I really do.

Obviously gradually vanishing is a strong image. There can be many reasons why you would vanish. Quantum Leap comes into mind. But it also brings up questions, like why gradually? Are you doing it for effect? Are you trapped somehow and slowly fading away from existence? What does this life really mean if we are all but a tiny blip in the timeline that is the universe…er um..Ahem. Evanesce.

The first thing I thought about when hearing this word is the band Evanescence. I saw them in concert in Mesa many years ago, the first concert I ever saw in fact. My wife and I were two of probably one-hundred adults in a screaming throng of teenagers, only we weren’t there as chaperones.

Amy Lee, the lead singer, is incredible. Her voice is sublime and I love the juxtaposition of such an angelic voice with a hard-rock sound. The band themselves even played into this a bit with some of their music videos, particularly  the song “Broken” by Seether who had Amy on to do vocals with their band. She wore dirty and broken angel wings while they sang in a desecrated landscape…takes me back…

“Whoa Tom, I thought we were talking about creating an idea here? Why the sudden music critique? Are they even relevant anymore?”

Well, good reader, I thought I should take a second to explore what this word means to me. (And yes, they are totally relevant).

I do not have a very large vocabulary. I find myself using the dictionary function of my kindle more often then I would like to admit, but this word I did know, and it was only because of the band. I remember being in my 20’s when Evanescence’s first big hit “Bring Me to Life” hit and was blown away by Amy’s powerful yet sweet voice. This word evokes emotion in me that not many words do. There is a history, a backstory for me with this word that goes beyond the simple definition. Sometimes what a word means to you is more important than what the dictionary says it should.

This is why I giggled like a school-girl when I happened to pull up the website and saw it as the word of the day.

But this is step one. Looking at this single word and thinking about it more. Fleshing it out. What does it mean to you? What does it mean to other people?

So how can we flesh this word out to a story? Let’s do some brainstorming by jotting down words that I thought of.

Evanesce:

Fade Away

Disappear

Angels

Angelic Voice

Youth

Screaming Masses

Mass of Angels, screaming as they fade into nothing.

Of course I’m now going to have their songs stuck in my head all day, which isn’t a bad thing, but I also have some ideas forming in my mind as to where I want to go with a story.

Today we have spent a little bit of time looking at a word and exploring the meaning, both official and personal, to me. I am curious what the word Evanesce means to you? Next week I plan on expanding the initial nugget of an idea into a phrase that we can use to start working on a story. A word is great, but a phrase can be so much more. A phrase can introduce conflict!

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1 Comment

  1. Ideaifying Pt 3: The Expandening | The World of the 7 Evil Dwarves

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