What are your favourite songs to write to? Here at CompletelyNovel, we love listening to music whilst we write, whether it’s a blog post (like this one!) or a short story. We want to create the ultimate writing playlist, including songs for every genre, every scene and every character. Here’s how you can get involved.
For many people, listening to music whilst they write can provide inspiration, distraction, concentration or help you immerse yourself in the world you’re creating. If you’ve never tried writing to music, give it a go – you’ll be surprised how it can affect your writing! Of course, music choices vary from author to author. Writers often prefer to listen to different types of music depending on what kind of scene or book they are writing. For instance, Gabriel García Márquez swore by Beatles’ records while writing One Hundred Years of Solitude.
To get our ultimate writing playlist started, we’ve kicked our playlist off with five songs we listen to whilst we write. They range from classical to electronic and include a little something for everyone!
1. Erik Satie’s Gymnopédie No. 1 – These gentle piano compositions are perfect for setting the scene, describing surroundings and introducing your reader to your book.
2. Air’s Alone in Kyoto – Perfect for those descriptions of sweeping landscapes, whether fantasy fiction or travel guides.
3. René Aubry’s Rasta la Vista – An ideal background to set the pace for your dialogue.
4. Massive Attack’s Teardrop – To guide you through those grand love scenes in romance, or in biography.
5. Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard’s The Dark Knight theme – Having trouble getting to know your villain? Pop this in your ears and see if it helps!
Have your own favourite songs to write to? Send us your suggestions for our ultimate playlist! We’ll add the best ones to our Spotify playlist, which you are free to scribble away to, any time.
To join in:
Sounds like a great idea and I have a wide selection of music that is both comforting and inspiring. Rhapsody in Blue by Gershwin is great mood music. Dire Straits Money for Nothing is wonderful for action writing. I will include these on your FB page.
My books tend to be written from a different character’s perspective scene by scene, so knowing their musical taste and listening to it while writing their scenes helped me to stay in character. If you’ve read the books you’ll know whose battle tune is ‘Uprising’ by Muse, who recalls her schooldays listening to Abba and who’s in the mood for love after Puccini’s ‘E lucevan le stelle’, but who’s the Sibelius aficionado and which southern boy actually prefers Oasis to Blur? Good subject for a blog post – must do soon!
Muse was great for writing invigorating scenes; Karnataka (progressive rock) was wonderful for sweeping imagery. I used both almost exclusively for our first novel, but then wrote the second to whatever was on my random playlist. Both seemed to work – although if a track on the random list wasn’t one I rate highly, it got plucked off rather quickly! ;)
Thank you for your suggestions, David, Sarah and Joanna – they’ve been added to our writing playlist. Make sure you have a listen and invite fellow authors to submit a song or two :)
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