Thursday, March 3, 2011

Music for writers

image courtesy of Kim Smith

You would think that the voices in our heads would be enough to keep us writing for days, but no, most of us want music to thrum through our brains to get us into the "mood" we are trying to evoke. Moods are like M & M candies... they are bright and they are dark and all of them can be taken out and savored when important for a piece of writing.

I have been a big fan of music for writing for a long time. I swear I wore out the song Kryptonite when writing my first mystery. I know of many really well-known authors who keep a song list handy when they are writing to get that mood just right. Some think there is a connection from brain to fingers when music is playing. I happen to be in that crowd.

So on my search for this blog post, I went and googled music for writers, and found this link at Mashable. A lot of you out there are probably already well familiar with the site, but honestly, it was my first time there.

I LOVED the site Musicovery and will use it again, it is a lot like Pandora in that it will create a list for you based on one artist's type of music. It differs though because you can choose your music list BY MOOD!

Anyway, if you have a song list for every book, or if you have never tried it, post your thoughts in this thread and tell us how this mood selection could benefit you as a writer.

I decided to give you a bit of my choices for my current WIP also, so you could see how I roll :)

This was for WIP entitled Loren Rudder, Secret Key
1. Natalie Imbrulia- Wrong Impression (and Torn-- and Shiver)
2. Amy Winehouse-You Know I'm no Good
3. The Band-The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down
4.NERD-Rock Star
5. Delinquent Habits-Get up, get on it

--all pretty easy-going music for the most part, but I am writing fantasy and sometimes it helps to have lyrics that are dramatic, but not so much for the actual music--but then again, it could have just been the mellow mood I was in!

So what is your POISON?


Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Kim, this is a wonderful post! I'm going to check out your suggested links. I have my iPod full of my favorites - from opera to blues, from Ella Fitzgerald to Janice Joplin. But my very favorite for writing includes loon songs matched to some classics. I can hear the water dripping from the paddles of canoes, pretend I'm out on the lake, and man... it gets my muse going like mad! Now I'm going to have to listen to your faves and check them out. Thanks, and have a splendid day.

Marta Stephens said...

Although I can't write and listen to music, when I was in the trying-to-figure-it-out stage of SILENCED CRY, I listended to several CDs by Rod Stewart in his "The Great American Songbook" series.

To this day, when I listen to any of those songs, I think about scenes from my book.

Charmaine Clancy said...

I find I listen to soft rock when I write - I can't listen to my favourite music (Rock n Roll and Country) because I end up too distracted.

Aaron Paul Lazar said...

P.S. I want those M&Ms...

Ron Adams said...

I am an unabashed fan of Jimmy Buffett, and he provided a lot of the "Internal Soundtrack" to Key Lime Squeeze, along with a little known band The Survivors. For my latest WIP, Crossing Midnight, I have been spending time between Esperanza Spaulding, and Chicago. Great post about our little idiosyncracies. Way to go, KS!

Unknown said...

Hi Kim, thanks for this post. I use Spotify on my computer which tries to second guess what music I might like based on previous choices. Computer you are way off the mark and there was me thinking it was just my wife that didn't undestand me.
I don't want music that I like too much or I'll be too much into the music and not enough into my writing. I'll take a look at your suggestions Kim :-)