I can’t write while listening to music, but that doesn’t mean I don’t rock out in my car every chance I get or that songs haven’t inspired my writing. And honestly, what’s for fun than making a playlist for a book about a serial killer?
Music plays a huge part in helping me visualize scenes, develop characters, and you know, I have to dance around to something.
Even though I can’t focus enough while the music is playing, I have a list of songs to help me get into that world and my character’s mindset. Since I’m back to working on THE KILLING TYPE, I’ve been indulging in Marilyn Manson’s cover of “Sweet Dreams” on repeat.
The songs aren’t in any particular order, but I wanted to make sure I had a balance of “character” songs and “scene” songs, this way if there was something I needed, I could plug right in. As fun as my visual representations on Pinterest are, music activates a very different part of my writer brain. I feel emotions clearer, and occasionally solve plot and development issue.
Plus, it’s fun.
Charlotte Grimly, MC and local schizophrenic, has Egypt Central’s “White Rabbit” as her main theme, along with Lauren O’Connell’s killer cover of “House of the Rising Sun.”
Elizabeth Géroux, bored musician and would-be femme fatale, gets “Rock ‘n’ Roll Sweetheart” by The Creepshow and Panic! at the Disco’s “Hurricane.”
Jonathan Gale, my darling detective, rocks MCR’s “Thank You for the Venom.”
“Danse Macabre” is dedicated to a costume gala while “Sweet Dreams” is relegated to a filthy, smoke-and-lust-filled night club.
Every song fits an aspect of the character, including his or her personality. Charlotte is often torn between eerie quite and foreboding and a mad rush she can’t control. Lizzie is a whirlwind, excitable and volatile. Jonathan has a bit of an edge to his outer analytical detective.
I can’t tell you all the secrets behind the songs, but if you ask nicely, I might drop a hint or two. There’s also a playlist for THE MORTALITY VICE, but that, for now, is a secret.
What are your favorite tunes to get you in the writing mindset?