Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sound Track

At the moment I'm working on a new project that I'm pretty excited about. It's different from anything I've done before and I think that novelty is part of my enjoyment. Don't get me wrong, it still has elements of the things that I love about my writing...it just has other facets that I'm enjoying exploring.

But along with venturing into new territory with my story, I've also found that my process is morphing a little. In the past, I've used music to get me into the mood for writing a specific scene or to help me when brainstorming. However, the moment I sit down to a blank page open on my computer screen the music gets shut off. I can't concentrate.

Maybe it's because of my dance background. There's something about music that makes my muscles...move. Almost as if while the music is coming in through my ears it has to flow out through my feet and hands and head. This makes writing a little difficult. Not to mention that I find myself typing the lyrics instead of the scene that's in my head. The closest I've ever gotten to writing with music before has been listening to a fantastic creativity CD. Very low. With no lyrics.

There's something about this new project and my creative juices that seems to be triggered by music. Rock music. Heavy metal music. The Playfriends will attest to the fact that for years I've listened to Country. Not so much right now. At the moment I'm spending my time with pounding beats and heavy lyrics ringing through my ears. And LOVING it!

For some reason, the same things that bothered me just months ago no longer seem a problem when I'm writing with music in my ears. The other day I was coming home from work, completely and totally exhausted and ready to write my productivity for the day off. I switched on my rock playlist in the car and thirty minutes later when I got home I was energized and ready for the words to flow.

I'm wondering if this is a new development in my writing process or simply because the music fits the project that I'm working on. I suppose I'll find out soon enough. The cool thing is that when I get done with this book it'll have its own soundtrack...at least in my own head.

Do you listen to music when you write? How about when your read or watch TV? Do you constantly have music in the background or do you rarely listen to it? Do you have any favorite songs or artists that you think I should listen to? I'm always looking to add to my playlist.

Instigator

8 comments:

Christine said...

I listen to rock/pop/dance music when I write, but it depends on the phase of writing I am in when I do so. Pearl Jam and Kings of Leon are high on my list right now. I also have oldies like Brian Adams, The Who and others on my play list. I enjoy tuning out the world when I am in first draft/first revision mode. But when I am polishing? Nope. Silence is golden.

Glad you are having fun!

Jean said...

I do listen to music when I write. I've even made playlists for certain characters. I'm thankful for the technology that allows me to do that quickly. If I couldn't do it in five minutes, I wouldn't take the time but it really does help me.

Though I always have music on in the car and my iPod in my head when I walk, I don't have music in the background all the time. And I almost never turn on the television during the day.

Smarty Pants said...

For me, it really depends on my mood and the book itself. I can usually listen to songs with lyrics, but they can't be loud enough for me to sing along. Sometimes I just need the tempo or the feel of the song to get me through a scene. For some reason, I listened to the Gorillaz almost the entire time I was writing the klepto book. It had the 'quirk' I guess.

Though depending on what I'm writing, the words can help, too. When I wrote a slow dance scene in the poker book, I had "Angels" by Sarah McLachlan on repeat the entire time. It had the feel I needed. For another scene where I needed high, slinky sexual tension, I played "Eyes on Fire" by Blue Foundation. For another...uh...scene... "I'm a Slave 4 U" by Britney Spears. :)

Problem Child said...

I'm too easily distracted (an aural learner) to have music with lyrics on while I do anything I need to concentrate on. I can't even read with music on, much less type comments on a blog. So, it's new-agey, instrumental while I work.

When I'm done, THEN I pump up the volume!

Playground Monitor said...

If I listen to music when I write, it has to be instrumental. And it has to be something instrumental that I don't know the lyrics to or I'll start to sing. I have some new-age stuff that's designed to enhance your concentration and another one for creativity. I'll listen to those, especially if I'm writing at a coffee shop because I have to drown out the extraneous noise.

Merri said...

I'm like Christine. Depending on what I'm writing I listen to all sorts, rock, pop and even opera. But if the lyrics become distracting I switch to instrumental. I especially love listening to film scores like Lord of the Rings, The Mission or anything that's emotionally charged. As a rule I find music inspires and feeds the muse.

But when I get to the final draft, where I read aloud to myself, only silence will do.

Liza said...

I listen to music while I work during the day. I also will put on my gym mix on my ipod when I need to clean my house, because it keeps me moving. I can read and listen to music or watch tv, but I don't really pay attention to the music or the tv as much when I'm really in a book.

Kathy said...

I like to write to music but not the kind with lyrics. I do enjoy the Underworld and Queen of the Damned soundtracks though. If I was writing paranormal, I might turn to those CD's. But the music would have to be something that would not tear me away from the time period too. Very narrow road.

Best of luck with the new project and process, Instigator!!