I have wanted to be a writer since I was 12, practically half of my life. The thing that started it was travelling. When I was younger and I’d be squished in the back of the car with my siblings going to or from a trip out with the family. It wasn’t always terrible. I mean, in the summer it would feel like the three of us were being roasted alive in the back of the car, but hey a trip to the seaside was more than worth it.
Anyway, I digress, usually on the way back from Scarborough, and us kids had bickered about having the window open, I’d end up staring out the window ignoring the other two. This is when I’d pay attention to the music. It was wonderful, I didn’t have anything else to do sat there so my mind would drift and imagine all sorts of scenarios inspired by the music. I loved to make up stories about the people I saw on the street, the houses I saw, people in other cars. Part of me would wish I could ask people where they were going and what they were doing just to see if I was at all close.
The music was usually a heavy influence. I can’t be the only person to be sat in a car or on a bus or train listening to music and thinking that this would be a great shot for a music video or a film. Right?
If I want to just do some quick writing, 80’s music is a great inspiration. The way that the songs are written takes the listener on a journey. A lot of songs are little stories themselves. I enjoy picking them apart and filling in the gaps. Lyrics are very powerful too. A word or a line can spark an idea. I’ve had a few characters spawn from a line of a song, that became a line of dialogue. I once wrote a University Assignment based on When Will I Be Famous? by Bros., I think I annoyed my friends singing it all the time.
Now, I have a weakness for soundtrack music. I swear fantasy film/TV soundtracks make me melt into a puddle of emotions, and they’re fantastic to write to! Seriously, if I want to write a dramatic scene I head for something from Game of Thrones or The Lord of the Rings. Action scene? Give me a Marvel film. Something that’ll make my heart hurt? Harry Potter or Sherlock.
Music can really make you feel. I swear it’s magic.
If music can do that – then so can words, but it helps me to be really feeling what I’m writing. There has been a time or two that I’ve cried while writing. Actual wet tears. It’s quite detrimental, to be honest. Wet paper isn’t easy to write on and the tears get in the way of being able to see the paper in the first place.
Even having music in the background while I’m writing can keep in the zone, in the mood of the piece. For me, music helps so much when I’m writing. It’s such a gift. Please, give me some recommendations of things to listen to, I love discovering new music!