Friday, June 28, 2013

The Power of Music

I got the music in me…
...Well, at least it’s on my iPod (which is PRACTICALLY an extension of my hipbone or shoulder, depending where I decide to “hook” it today). And it’s a beautiful day in the Midwest. One worthy of a long morning drive in my convertible with my dog… and the radio.

First let me explain a bit. Like most people, I’m pretty easy to decode within ten minutes. I prefer the woods to water. I’m artsy. I’m a bit off-center. I don’t like being “boxed” in.

And MUSIC moves me...

Inspires me. It takes me places pictures can’t. Music can cause change. Music is powerful!

The long and winding drive this morning happened in part because a song came on the radio. If you are like me, even if you are mere seconds away from your driveway, a good song can make you rethink your stop.

The song that created that diversion today was “Same Love” by Macklamore. It’s a beautiful song.

Recently, I downloaded the entire album, The Heist, to my iTunes. But before this album, I bet there wasn’t one rap song on my playlist. (Okay, maybe “Ice-ice, Baby” but that’s only because I was in college when it came out.)

I love nearly everything on this album. It’s bouncy, it’s energetic, and for the most part, it’s about story-telling.

But from the moment I heard, “Same Love”, I knew it was part of one of my story’s playlist.

The song, for those unfamiliar, shares the story of same-sex relations. Apparently the team of Ryan Lewis and Ben Haggerty wrote the song in support of equal rights laws in Washington state.

Give or take your personal views on marriage etc., what I heard in the song was “LOVE”. Unconditional. Non-judgmental. Simple-LOVE.

Maybe it’s Mary Lambert’s soulful hook, “I can’t change. Even if I tried. Even if I wanted too.” Whatever it is, it works for my story.

The manuscript I’ve attached this song to, one that is dear to my heart, is not about gay relations. It’s about friendship. The story is about a friendship with all the trappings and complications of society. The main characters are two preteen boys and a slightly older girl from different social classes.

Essentially, the story boils down to the depths of platonic relationships. And Walla! The song, “Same Love” fits for my purposes.

There are other songs that work for my WIP too. But this is my favorite.

I’ve made playlists for each of my WIPs. I have ‘20s and ‘30s music for a historical fiction. There are e-pop songs for a dystopian manuscript.

But like most writers I know, music can be distracting to listen to while in the actual writing stage. I use music for inspiration. It’s motivational to me for times I am wrestling with those deep, internal conversations with characters and story development. Music can set the mood. It can relate and recreate a time period. It can create a specific space and place for my characters.

Are there certain songs that you use when writing? If not, perhaps it’s time to search Pandora. Plop in key words that relate to your theme, characters, or setting and see what comes up!

It might be exactly what you need to get the story rolling!

1 comment:

Louann Mattes Brown said...

Great idea, thanks Juli!