Here’s a fun social experiment you can try with budding toddlers:
Draw three circles on a piece of paper. You know where I’m going with this. No matter how you try to draw them, for many of us the three circles will end up looking like this.
Now comes the social experiment. Put the paper down before your burgeoning little human and see the word that comes forth. My one-and-a-half-year-old girl at the time of said experiment knew the words Mickey Mouse before she could associate who her grandparents and cousins were.
It’s not like we put Mickey cartoons on and left her alone during cognitive brain development moments in her infancy. The iconic brand is literally everywhere.
The point I’m making is that through multiple and unavoidable exposures at such an early age, my child became knowledgeable about Mickey Mouse. She may not have known every aspect of the Disney brand, but she didn’t need to. The brand was engraved into her thoughts.
My daughter is now three. If I ask her what she wants to be when she grows up, she always has two answers readily available. The first is a ballerina.
The second is a princess.
Disney has become known worldwide for building fantasies. Almost every movie and television show they create has an element of fantasy which moves the plot forward, develops the characters, and makes the songs catchy as hell!
As a writer of Fantasy I am enthralled with any franchise which makes us believe in magical worlds, dynamic characters, and talking cats. However, even more so than that I am enthralled with how the Disney brand has marketed themselves long after the original creator has passed.
In order to make the characters I write feel more iconic, I honestly do go back and study some of the greatest fantasies of our time and learn what worked so well and what made them so timeless.
Some people call it the Disney formula. I call it a team of talented writers who embrace the fantasy genre and make it unique.
Either way, it’s the writer I aspire to become.
Write strong, write long, write on!