If a picture paints a thousand words, music paints a thousand pictures. Laura Whitcomb
Good Morning Muse Trackers! I’m on my third day of NaNo and am far too caffeinated for my own good.
If you’re not familiar with NaNo, there is a minimum word count that you are supposed to hit every day of around 1700 words. That is no small feat! I’m a slow writer by nature so pushing myself like that is very difficult. So far, I’ve hit above the word count and am on cloud nine.
Yesterday, I threw out a question on the NaNoers FB page and was surprised by the number of passionate responses that popped up.
What do you listen to while you write?
Some swore by classical, others claimed silence was their auditory muse. A few liked Korn, and jazz mixed with blues filled the air with the rest of the responses. Wow- what an eclectic mix!
Laura Whitcomb wrote Novel Shortcuts and covered this topic in her wonderful book on the craft of writing. (If you haven’t read it yet, treat yourself.) She puts together actual soundtracks for her novels. It’s a collection of music that captures the mood and action of her storytelling. It’s important for her to find musical pieces that “speak directly to the real emotion driving the novel”.
This would be an interesting technique to try on my next novel. Perhaps if I had a specific soundtrack, the music might help me blast past the walls I run into that stop me dead in the water! Sounds good. I’m too far into this novel and NaNo is pushing me forward with an insistent call of the word count, so it will have to wait.
Pandora is a wonderful thing and a quick way of putting on types of music. www.pandora.com I’ve created several different types of music stations that fit either my mood or the mood of the scene I’m writing. My Robin Trower (a blues/rock guitarist who’s been compared Jimi Hendricks) station got me through an emotional push and pull between my two main characters yesterday. This faded into my Josh Groban station when she described the death of her father. Whew! Talk about a stretch in one day.
Laura Whitcomb ends her chapter with a recommended list of music. I’ll pass that on to you. Good luck with your writing today! Let me know what you like to listen to when you commune with your keyboard.
The Others by Alejandro Amenbar- strange, dangerous, and anguished
Ladies in Lavender by Nigel Hess- romantic, pure, and charming
Kingdom of Heaven by Harry Gregson-Williams- stark, passionate, and enchanted
Hamlet by Patrick Doyle- honorable, aching, and pensive
Gladiator by Hans Zimmer- Celtic, rueful, and heroic
The Lord of the Rings by Howard Shore- ethereal, nostalgic, and ominous
Carnivale by Jeff Beal- bleak, desolate, tender, and eerie
Titanic by James Horner- haunting, sweet, and grand
Henry V by Patrick Doyle- courtly, noble, and pastoral
Munich by John Williams- ancient, holy, and heartbreaking