Strange Coincidences: Dragonflies

This is a small, strange coincidence from yours truly.

A little fact about me: I almost always choose names for characters based on their meanings. I’ve been doing it since my first short story I wrote when I was 18, where a serial killer killed his victims in ways that reflected their name’s meanings.

For my book, Pantomime, it’s the same. Drystan means “riot” or “tumult,” which fits well for a clown, for example. So if you ever want to know a tiny bit more about most of my characters, look up their name meanings.

But there were two characters in the first and second book whose names I didn’t choose based on meaning: Aenea and Cyan.

I heard the name Aenea when I was in high school and I remember thinking that it sounded like a cool fantasy name. Aenea’s an aerialist, and it flowed nicely and fit her character. Cyan is a new character in the sequel to Pantomime, and I chose that one because cyan is one of my favourite colours.

Dragonflies keep cropping up in my book. I went to Wikipedia to go research them out of curiosity. I scrolled down to the listing of the Latin names of different varieties of dragonflies, and I saw these two names:

Downy EmeraldCordulia aenea

Southern HawkerAeshna cyanea

That was a coincidence. Unless, somehow, I’d gone on this site before and it’d lodged in my subconscious, which could perhaps be possible.  And cyan and aenea, in retrospect, are quite obviously Latin-based. But I came up with Aenea’s name in 2007 and Cyan’s in 2012, so there was no conscious connection.

I’ve now added a third name based on dragonflies, and that one was intentional: Anisa, from “ancient dragonflies” (Anisozygoptera).

Just another one of life’s strange little coincidences.


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