Quite often, as I sit down to write, before I put pen to paper, I turn on music. It doesn’t matter what I’m writing, a blog post, a chapter in my romance novel, a few sentences of a new idea, I always try to have music playing. And quite often I try to match the music to my writing’s subject matter. For me, music increases my inspiration while writing my story. Currently, I’m writing a novel that takes place in the highlands of 18th century Scotland, so usually, you won’t find me writing and listening to say, Kanye (bad example, I never listen to Kanye, but you get the idea).
When I begin working on a huge project, like a novel, I try to find a theme song. Something that really inspires me, and sets me into the mood of my story, or even that places me into the setting of my story. Go and listen to Nil Se’n La, my novel’s theme song, and you’ll see what I’m talking about.
But let’s break this down a little bit more. What is it so important about having a theme song? Why should you listen to it while you’re writing? Well, writer, I will tell you why.
Music sets the mood. If you were writing a scene in which a daring young woman finds herself on a pirate ship, fighting off mangy sea-scum, you probably wouldn’t want to be listening to lullaby music. No, my guess is you’d want to listen to something off The Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack. It would set the mood for the story or scene you are currently bleeding your soul into.
Music offers a new inspiration. Maybe you heard a song and that is where your story idea came from. For me, and the Scottish highland story, I heard the Celtic folk song The Water is Wide. I mixed the lyrics with a few events and people from my personal life and meshed it into a novel. Maybe for you, you need new inspiration. Go YouTube some epic soundtracks and be inspired.
Music creates an atmosphere. Music is so special in writing, because it transports your soul to places that not many other art forms can. Quite often, I listen to soundtracks because they have been specifically created to be vessels in which our imaginations can travel. Also, the lack of words helps with better focus. Music can transport you to places you’ve never been, but created in your mind.
My challenge to you today, is go and find your story’s theme song. If your story were a movie, what would be on the soundtrack? What moves your pen across the paper? What transports your soul into the thick of your writing?
Leave your theme song in the comments below or let us know if you listened to links above.
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