Everyone has their own special way to find inspiration for their writing. For some, it’s the peace and quiet. For others, it can be chaos and relentless noise pounding against the ear drums. Have you ever listened to a song, and when it hits a certain part or key, your body releases its’ dopamine and you get goosebumps and a light feeling takes you over? Did you just think of a certain song that makes you feel that way? Are you getting goosebumps because it’s like I know what’s happening before it even happens? Okay, I’m done. Essentially what I’m saying is that music can be a powerful tool for finding inspiration.
For me personally, when I listen to metal, I imagine this really intricate scenes in which my characters are kicking ass and taking names. Other times, when I’m not feeling like a hulk, hell-bent on combat and destruction, I listen to softer music along the lines of violin pieces or classical. Don’t get me wrong, there are some classical pieces that sound action packed (i.e. Flight of the Valkyries). Personally, the key to coming up with good scenes, and well developed characters, is finding songs or pieces that resonate with what I am trying to write.
Music has this innate sense to directly influence how we feel, and when we channel that into a creative outlet, I feel that the result is made even better. That goes for any creative outlet honestly, be it working out or drawing, all the way to writing. The reality of inspiration is that it doesn’t necessarily come out of the sky and hit you across the face. Inspiration is a muscle that needs to be flexed, and exercised. Music just so happens to be a workout bench for that muscle.
Since this is my blog, I figured I would make a list of music that helps me out with inspiration when trying to think of all the moving parts that make up a novel.
- Phinehas (Metal) – These guys are pretty much my favorite band, they make some amazing and brutal music that makes me think of some pretty epic fights scenes, while some of their slower music is perfect for drawing up some interpersonal conflict.
- August Burns Red (Metal) – Another metal band, but seriously great stuff about introspection and life. Great for writing a character that needs to find confidence and principle.
- Death Cab for Cutie (Indie rock): I personally like their older stuff, but their music perfect for the moments in your novel that aren’t very fast paced, especially their album Transatlanticism.
- Lindsey Stirling (Violin/Techno): I absolutely love writing to her music, I have to say that when I write to her more upbeat songs such as Crystalize or Elements, I’m able to think incredibly more clear. Definitely worth checking out.
There are tonnes more artists and playlists that work for me, but there’s always inspiration to be found in music. If you have an artist that you absolutely love to write to, tell me who they are!
Photo Credit: Caiomm.Deviantart.com