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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Soundtrack of my life

Well, maybe not my life, but certainly my characters life. Like a lot of writers, I often need a little something to get me in the right mood. Quite often the sight of the school bus departing or the perfect latte is not nearly enough to get the creative juices flowing. I could succumb to the joy of early morning chocolate, breaking my own rule about consuming junk food prior to 10am. But once you have one Tim Tam the ending is a foregone conclusion. The rest of the packet is going to empty embarassingly quick.

My only hope is music. I'm not saying I'm capable of producing anything remotely resembling a tune. But I have a fearsome collection of songs on iTunes to fix me up.

Heartstarters - for when the sweet oblivion of a few more hours of sleep is distracting me from my commitment to full-time writing:

A Little Less Conversation - Elvis Presley + Elvis vs JXL
A Change Would Do You Good - Sheryl Crow
Viva la Vida - Coldplay

In Love

Sunrise - Norah Jones
Message to My Girl - Split Enz
The Kiss - Karmina

Angst and Loneliness

No Aphrodesiac - The Whitlams
More than This - The Cure
No Ordinary Love - Sade

Dark Mood - for when I'm happy and have to think sad thoughts

Hole in the River - Crowded House
Darkness - Darren Hayes
Blood Theme (from Dexter) - Daniel Licht

And last but not least, songs for those all important intimate hero and heroine moments

Caramel - Suzanne Vega
Colorblind - Counting Crows
I Like the Way - Darren Hayes

Of course, what influences me might not work for you at all. So if you've got favorite songs that you want to give a shout out to please post your selection with the mood they suit. I'm always on the look-out for more great artists!


  1. Fun post, Heather! I love to know what music other people like. However, I don't know 95% of the songs you listed. LOL!

    Despite the fact I'm a singer and spent a butt load of money on music conservatory, I rarely listen to music. When I work out, I have a mix of my favorite top 40 songs (a lot of Glee, Kelly Clarkson, Britney and Katy Perry), but there's rarely music playing in the house.

  2. I love to write to music, but if I listen to anything remotely modern while I'm writing my historicals, I'm pulled out of the period. So, I tend to either write in silence, or with classical music playing in the background.

    But, I take a lot of inspiration from more modern music. Sometimes a simple line of a lyric will spawn an entire novel. It's pretty cool when that happens.

  3. Thanks for sharing your playlist, Heather. My favorite tunes are the ones my son plays for me on his acoustical guitar. But the personal concert makes it very hard to write.

    For writing, I tend to go with setting. I think of where the story is set and try to listen to the music they would have access to.

  4. LOL I constantly have cartoon network on in the background during the day so I tend to tune everything out except the little one. After fifteen years of this, its easy for me. So no music, tv or any other sounds for me. I don't need silence either though. I can write while my teens have thier music blaring plus hubby's video games, plus cartoon network going lol. My house is massive chaos on most days. You just learn to cope I guess. I'm not sure what I would do with a day of silence. Panick I think. Oh but I'd love to try it out just once. =)

  5. Speaking as the Jodie 1/2 of Lydia - my ex-husband is a composer. I could go the rest of my life without hearing another song. No soundtracks for me. ;)

  6. Most of the time I don't write to music, but if that blasted beagle is barking, I'll listen to my iPod. To keep me focused on writing, I do best with alternative bands, such as Spoon, Cold Play, Death Cab for Cutie, The Kooks and Keane. Plus, some of their lyrics hit me in the right way and help me break through a block when the words just aren't flowing.

    However, I like to run to really peppy music, like The Black-eyed Peas, Lady Gaga or techno. Oh, and sometimes I really like to listen to the Toadies. Their music has a driving, predatory feel, great if you're getting ready to write a villain. I think "Possum Kingdom" is about a vampire, but maybe not. The great thing about music is you can make up whatever story you like to go with it. :)

  7. Thanks for dropping by. A family emergency took me away from home today.

    Jerrica - there were only four Aussie acts there. Lol
    Catherine - I do listen to some classical, but not all the time.
    Clarrisa - I'm so jealous of your private concerts.
    Melissa - I have a tough time writing with tv noise so I applaud you for being able to ignore it!
    Jodie - Its so horrible he took music away from you too! $&@/--:(
    Samantha - thanks for the band suggestions. I'm off to check them out!!