Monday, 12 September 2011

How the leopard got it's spots and how the business got it's name...

The Leopard thing was just a decoy...if you want to know how the Leopard supposedly got it's spots you'll want to read Rudyard Kipling's 'Just so Stories,' but to summarize.....

The Leopard used to live on the sandy-coloured High Veldt. He too was sandy-coloured, and so was hard for prey animals like Giraffe and Zebra to see when he lay in wait for them. The Ethiopian lived there too and was similarly coloured. He, with his bow and arrows, used to hunt with the Leopard.

Then the prey animals left to live in a forest and grew blotches, stripes and other forms of camouflage. The Leopard and the Ethiopian were hungry and consulted Baviaan, the wise baboon, who said the prey animals had “gone into other spots” and advised them to do the same. So they went searching and came to the forest. They could smell Giraffe and Zebra there but could not see them. When night came, they managed to catch Giraffe and Zebra by sound and scent. They asked them why they looked so different and the two prey animals demonstrated how easily they could disappear against the forest background.

So the Ethiopian changed his skin to black, and marked the Leopard’s coat with his bunched black fingertips. Then they too could hide. They lived happily ever after, and will never change their colouring again.”
–summary courtesy of

Image from BFDC
Now that I'm not so intentionally misleading I can move onto how the business got its name.

Often when I mention the name of my business; Adamontise, I get some confused looks. I also find it quite funny when I'm dealing with a new wholesaler or insurance rep and they struggle to pronounce the name, (it's pronounced Adda-mon-tie-ze by the way)
Occasionally someone will scrape up the nerve to ask me exactly what Adamontise means and why I named my business after it. So for those of you who wonder, but daren't ask, I thought I'd explain a little bit about where the company got its name.

Adamontise doesn't mean anything as such. It's a word I made up. Don't roll your eyes just yet....

Many years ago we had the worst power cut in my memory. Through the following five hours of no electricity my husband and I, by candlelight invented the magical land of Menoria. We sketched a map and wrote colourful stories of revolution, adventure, love and betrayal. We debated the political background and history of this land, creating an in-depth fantasy series. (I did mention it was a very long power-cut..right?) The lead males surname was Freeol and the lead woman's surname was Adamontise.

Titled ' Bee-Eater'
This picture was created by the talented artist Danny Flynn
It has nothing to do with Adamontise,
(except that I loosely know Danny Flynn,)
and think this picture is fantastical enough to be worth sharing..
I loved that long afternoon and the creativity and excitement it sparked so much that the word Adamontise just stuck with me. Over the years I've used the name for my Xbox live account (feel free to friend me) virtual critters, user names etc. so when it came to naming my book business, Adamontise just fit.

Adamontise was born through fun, writing stories and being creative. There is nothing like the name already out there. (and if you do find something chances are it belongs to me too - apart from that creature in FF7 that logistically was probably around first, but I didn't discover that until Adamontise was operational so it doesn't really count.)

After all no-one knew what Waterstones, Ottakars (I don't even know how to spell Ottakars) Borders, Barnes&Noble or WHSmith were until they launched themselves as a book retailer. They weren't words you'd associate with the word 'book' , but they've become household names. we can only hope one day it will be the same for us, but for now we tack the word "books" on the end of Adamontise just to help ease ourselves into the market and people's memories.

While it's admittedly a different name, perhaps one you wouldn't automatically link with books, I feel it provides enough ambiguity that people see their own things in it. Adam was the 'first man' and while we're not the first book retailer, we hope we can offer a level of customer service, value for money and care that is the first in our field. I've had people say the name makes them think of Adamantium (a fictional, strong metal from the on-line game Runescape) and Stephen King's Needful things, just to name a few.
The only down-side is that the majority of people I deal with think it's run or owned by a guy called ADAM! Which it isn't. It's run by a 25-year-old woman called Holly.

So now you know - and yes, there will be a test later .. ;)

What does the name 'Adamontise' make you think of?