Music, Emotions and Writing

Today I came to the realization of just how important music has become to my writing and me in general. As I got home tonight, I turned on my computer, plugged in my speaker and prepared to get music playing from my Spotify account. For some unknown reason, it was having a temper tantrum and didn’t want to play. I restarted my computer in the hopes that when it started back up I would be able to play my music. The whole time I wondered what I was going to do if I couldn’t get the program to work right. Luckily it did.

My evenings are spent with music. From the moment I get home until my writing is done for the evening, I have music playing. I sway and bounce to the music as my fingers fly across the keyboard. It doesn’t matter what music either. I listen to rock, country, pop, classical, and instrumental. It all depends on my mood and also what I am writing. I always start with something upbeat to get my energy going while I get supper going and some daily cleaning things, then I find the music which suits what I am working on.

Last week I found myself listening to a variety of sadder songs and upbeat song. My personal novel I am working on had reached a sad section and whenever I would listen to music which were sad or I associated with a sad time, I was able to write the scenes with the emotions I wanted to portray. When working on business things, a radio ad, and plotting, I found myself playing more upbeat music. The nice thing about Spotify is that you can create playlist. I have songs which are all upbeat, songs that go to specific novel, and even ones that I find I listen to over and over.

There is nothing better to me than listening to something like “Uptown Funk” while I am writing. I am swaying in my chair and singing the words, all while fresh words are coming across my screen, creating a piece of art which I cherish. And when the writing isn’t working…

I find music really helps me with those times too. If I know the emotion I want to portray in the scene, I will search for a corresponding piece of music. Or just listened to some of the songs I have on my list to get ideas. There are some songs which tell stories and these are invaluable to writers. I have found myself coming up with ideas for my writing just by listening to a new song. The words tell the story I want to tell and it helps me to get into the mood.

I also find myself attracted to TV and movies that involve music. This week in particular will mark the end of Glee. I will join millions of people with tissues to say good-bye to Racheal, Kurt, Blaine and the rest of McKinley High as this series comes to its end after six emotional years. The thing which has drawn me to watch this show is the music. Listening to songs that range from every song made by Journey to current hits such as “Take Me To Church” all intertwined into a weekly story has helped me to see how music can help express what you are feeling and thinking.

Or how about movies such as Rock of Ages and Pitch Perfect? Both of these on my list of movies to that I love. Why? Because of the music. The music from Rock of Ages take me back to my teenage years and the love of rock music. I can’t hear the song “Don’t Stop Believin'” and not think of Rock of Ages or Glee. Music allows me to relieve those moments, not only from TV and movies, but in life. Not all of them are good, but they all share and emotion and as a writing, I want nothing than to relive emotions to put them on a page.

What do you do in order to get the emotions and scenes you are writing onto the page? Do you have a routine to get yourself into the writing mood? Is there a song which always transports you to a certain time and place whenever you hear it?



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