Music. I wish I had more time to talk about how amazing music is and what it does for me. Alas, I’ve decided to keep these posts as close to 500 words as possible, so I can’t. Instead I’ll dive straight into what I do with it music while writing.
In the past, I used music for mood. Ambience. If I needed a particular feel or tone in a piece then I tried to match the music to what I was writing. In particular, if I was writing the high fantasy piece I’ll be returning to after the trilogy, then I would use sound track music. Very little lyrics and lots of orchestral goodness. Usually The Lord Of The Rings. Howard Shore is an amazing musician and his music takes me through the entire spectrum of emotions. It’s perfect.
During NaNoWriMo I use anything fast because the aim of that month is to get the words down as fast as possible. No loitering, no faffing around. Speed, speed, speed!
I generally end up listening to a lot of J-pop in November because I don’t get distracted by the lyrics – I don’t speak Japanese!
I also had a phase of writing in absolute silence. And that lasted quite a long time. Out of nowhere I found that any noise at all was horribly distracting, meaning that I couldn’t even work if I could hear the television in the front room. I’m glad that didn’t last because it’s never quiet in my house. Not unless we’re all asleep.
Now I listen to anything. It doesn’t matter. Just… anything.
Though, saying that, I’ve found that following my trip to Birmingham last year to see Bo Burnham, I’ve listened to almost nothing but his three albums since November. O.o Dave is utterly sick of it – bless him – but I find something about the humour and wit of it really inspiring. And not at all distracting. Even when I break away from writing for a second or two to sing along, I go right back in to where I left off without a pause. I feel like I’ve found something amazing in those three albums because I can write anything while listening to him. Granted, a little bit of humour creeps in sometimes, but if it isn’t supposed to be there I can edit it out later.
Sean Platt recommends writing with headphones on. When I moved back onto my desktop from using my laptop in the front room I found this invaluable. Something about putting the music right up to my ears, meaning that everything else was blocked out, really put me in the groove. I’d tap-tappy-tap away and look up hours later without really knowing where I was.
In terms of flow, and continuity, and keeping up the pace, I think that’s a great tip and I’d recommend it to anybody. If your household allows for it, give it a try. You’ll be surprised to see what pours out of you.
Gosh, that was a link heavy post. *wipes brow* I hope they’re useful to you. 🙂
Do you guys listen to music while you write? What sort of things? Got any recommendations for me? I’m always up for hearing new music.