Monday, February 11, 2013

Using Music in Your Writing

Music. I love to listen to it. I love to dance to it. I also like to write to it.

I usually use it when:
  • I'm beginning a new book and have no idea where to start. I choose my music carefully, but it's amazing how the beginning of my books take shape and begin to flow. 
  • I use music when I really want to go deep. Because I struggle with romance scenes I like to use music; it helps to get me in the writing mood.
  • I put on some music when nothing is coming to me; when all I can do is sit there and stare at the blank screen. Music calms my nerves and allows the creative ideas to start flowing.
  • Photo by: Brandon Giesbrecht, courtesy of Flickr
  • I use music when there's a lot of distraction. It might even be good distraction like my grandchildren playing in the next room, or Grover on Sesame Street trying to fly. Music will help me to stay focused on the task at hand.
Remember these?
Photo by: Ferrari+caballos+fuerza=cerebro Humano, courtesy of Flickr
Depending on the music I choose, I can write a scene that a few moments prior just wasn't coming to me. If I'm writing something spiritual, putting on that type of music (usually instrumental) will allow my heart and my head to connect and to write something beautiful. If I'm writing action, especially intense action, I choose another piece of music with lots of noise.

Some of my favorite albums for writing include: Ocean Waves, by Lifescapes, Facing Future, by IZ Israel Kamakawaiwo'ole (good for books that have a tropical setting) and anything by Josh Groban. I also use the free radio stations on the web and plug in a theme for the music I want to have played. Pandora is my favorite.

When it comes to using music for your writing, the most important thing you can do is to choose the music wisely so that the scene's tone is where you want it. Second to that is using music when nothing is coming--a sure fire way to get through that 'writer's block.'

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