by Valerie Ipson
One of the questions that ANWA founder, Marsha Ward, has often asked in author interviews is "Do you listen to music while you write, and if so, what types?" Now I loooooooooooooove music. I crank it up when it's time to do housework or I'm driving in the car, and back when I had a preschooler still around, she'd have to ask me to turn it down. "Trying to play here," she'd remind me.
So, suffice it to say, music gets me going, but it is a distraction when I need to sit at the computer and string two or more words together in a coherent thought. It is too hard to tune out the lyrics and not sing along, and more often than not, I can't tune out the beat that will eventually get me up and dancing. (This generally just happens when I'm home alone...okay, and sometimes driving down the street--depends on the song). If I went the classical route as some authors report, I wonder if that might have the opposite effect and put me to sleep.
I was further intrigued by the whole idea of writing and music when I read that Stephenie Meyer says she can't write without music, and on her website she lists several bands that inspired her through the writing of the Twilight series. Then I started noticing that certain songs on my computer's playlist made me think about my novel's main character, her relationships, and her trials. The songs put me right into her teenage world. Any song by Taylor Swift, for example, makes me think of my character and the boy she's falling for because Taylor's songs are so fun and teenagery and a little bit country. There's a song called All Fall Down by One Republic that absoutely must be the song played during the opening credits of the movie...you know, the one they make out of my novel...but I'm getting ahead of myself (slightly!?).
I still need to turn off the tunes when I write, but I listen to them for inspiration before my fingers hit the keyboard. While my fictional world looks like just black words on a page, there's music in there, and when I finally let my main character overcome all her challenges, the beat is going to get her up and dancing! When I'm all done, I'll be dancing with her!
What songs inspire your writing and the fictinal worlds you create?