Creating a sound effects story was certainly challenging. I used the iLife sound effects library to come up with this. I was scrolling through when a clip called “packing boxes” caught my eye. I liked its sound, and it raised the questions of what is the in the box, and who is packing it. I always like to start with questions, they leave the direction of the story open-ended. In going through the other sound effects, I finally settled on:
- (un)Packing boxes
- Walkie talkie garble
- Packing boxes with walkie talkie static
- Door wood squeak
- Busy Station with footsteps
- Police car siren passing with busy station and footsteps
- Sports car passing
- Traffic with a fade-in of a jingle called Borealis that seemed like an end-credits type of song
The premise I came up with to match this sound effect story is:
A mysterious person opens a box to find that the contents they were looking for aren’t there. They pass through a crowded station and escape in their car just as the police arrive. They then drive off into the sunset, presumably to continue their search another day.
It’s astonishing how much of a story can be told without dialog or narrator (hopefully successfully in my case). I suppose it plays into the shared understanding of the meaning of specific sounds. And of course it allows for the listeners to create their own versions of the stories, as Jad Abumrad talked about. I wouldn’t be surprised if, in listening to my sound effect story, someone came up with an entirely different narrative from the one I imagined. It all depends on what you associate with the sound effects and how you decide they are connected.