Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Music Of Life

Music playing on MusicBox -- Get This Party Started, By: Pink.

Why am I mentioning that? Because it jogged my mind into thinking about why I can't seem to get a post started here.

Okay, I've been busy. I'm winding down to the last few chapters of edits on a cool thriller entitled: Treasure Hunt, by Jose Bogran, and I'm in the middle of an odyssey editing Terry Vinson's, American Oddities, but surely I could take a few minutes to type some words on here.

(Laugh, go ahead, because that's exactly what I'm doing... typing a few words on here.)

How many of you, though, not only use music to inspire you while you work, but gain inspiration directly from the music you've chosen?

Ideas pop in my head all the time while listening to songs--not from the actual story of the song, but a word, a line... I once wrote an entire novel from a single seed that a line of the song Kryptonite sprouted: "I took a walk around the dark side of the moon..." (Also the title of my novel. Most think of Pink Floyd--another of my favorite's--when they see the title, but it wasn't P.F.'s album that was the inspiration, rather the Three Doors Down song.)

Music plays such a huge part in my life. A song can trigger not only memories of past times, but the exact sights, smells, and sounds that accompanied the time when that song was huge in my life.

Although my musical taste is eclectic, most usually it will be 70's and 80's rock with some later work thrown in for good measure, or 80's to current country blasting away on my computer while I work.

What types of music inspire you ... and just how much of that inspiration turns into concrete themes in your work?


Bernita said...

I can't listen to music when I'm at the computer as I have to be able to hear whether or not my husband's collapsed on the kitchen floor or somewhere.
But songs have inspired with themes and images,and recalled emotions.
"If You Could Read My Mind" plays a part in Trio of Dragons, so much that if it weren't for copyright difficulties, I could use lines as chapter epigraphs.

ivan said...

Why does Bernita and her concerns for her husband make me think of James Thurber's "The Night the Bed Fell On My Father?"
Now that would make you stand up and take notice.
Our famous writer here in Canada, Peter C. Newman says he listens to jazz while composing.
In the first place, I hate jazz before the days of BMI and Sun Records, and in the second place, music would distract from giving the writing full attention.

Writing has a spell of its own, the black characters on white space, probably the ideal medium for the short story, like Thurber's
The Night the Bed Fell on My Father.
...As you may gather, I like Thurber, because he felt his own house and family were "out to get him."
Heaven forbid if it were a house full of elevator music.

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty much with Tami on tastes here. I also listen to music when I write. I don't get inspired by the music I'm listening, though. On the other hand, the silence in the death of night might be shortcut to a writer's block if I ever known any.

MissWrite said...

Bernita, that certainly is an understandable reason to not want anything to interfere with your ability to hear what's going on in the house.

Interesting song you have as a parallel to your story. That and having had the pleasure of reading snippets of your writing, makes me really want to read 'Trio'.

Ivan: I've had times like that, where I write in complete silence because anything more would be a hinderance. Other times, the music will be blaring, but I will have blocked it out, and not paid the slightest attention to what's playing until I'm finished, and realize the entire playlist is over. Most times, though, I feed off the passions of the music.

Jose-Yes, silence in the dead of night, and the blank white page are about equal, I think.

Anonymous said...

(It's Cup again. I should just register here.)

I almost always have music running on my headphones. I'm getting to the point where I can't type unless I have music on.

My play lists are organized according to what type of scene they'd match. I have three play lists for sex scenes (romantic sex, aggressive sex, and general sex). I've also got fight scene or action scene music, angst music, depression music, feel good music, and contemplative music. There are even a few that are guaranteed to make me cry and I'll use them just before a tragic moment. I have no clue how many songs I've pulled off CD's. I've not bothered to count them, but I've never lacked a good song for a scene.

If any of it has slipped into my writing it's been subconscious. I use the music to set the tone and mood within myself.