Usually, I write in silence, or in the background noise of a TV show I don't want to watch in the other room. I do my best writing first thing in the morning before everyone gets up, or late at night when I can't sleep*, and I think that's because there's less distraction. I'm laser-like in my intentions and super-distractable in moment-to-moments!
But here's the thing: Soundtracks seem to grow themselves.
I wrote Married to the Wind almost entirely in four-page chunks each morning before work, when everything was still and quiet and I look stare at the fishtank** if I needed to find a particular word. But I also was required, through school, to send off 50-page chunks each month to my crit partners, and they started saying things like "This reminds me of this song...". And I started listening to new music along the way and found a few of them myself. So by the time I got to editing Married (and it needed a lot of editing), there was a list of songs that really did work with the theme and feel and even some of the actual events of the book, and I played that while I edited to keep me above water. I find editing my own stuff a lot harder than writing it, and I needed the constant reminder of what I was aiming for.
Here's Married to the Wind's playlist:
- Macro - Depeche Mode
- Nothing's Impossible - Depeche Mode
- Rabbit Heart - Florence + The Machine
- Drumming Song - Florence + The Machine
- What the Water Gave Me - Florence + The Machine
- Never Let Me Go - Florence + The Machine
- No Light, No Light - Florence + The Machine
- Cosmic Love - Florence + The Machine
- Hurricane Drunk - Florence + The Machine
- Heavy In Your Arms - Florence + The Machine
- Lover to Lover - Florence + The Machine
- Strangeness And Charm - Florence + The Machine
- Spectrum - Florence + The Machine
- Soul Meets Body - Deathcab for Cutie
- Follow You Into the Dark - Deathcab for Cutie
- Meet Me On the Equinox - Deathcab for Cutie
- Enjoy the Silence - Depeche Mode
- Woman King - Iron & Wine
- Freedom Hangs Like Heaven - Iron & Wine
- Heartlines - Florence + The Machine
*Which is a lot, lately. But most of my late-night writing has been journaling and brain-dumping so that I can sleep lately, which leaves me with the morning--or the afternoon if everyone else clears out.
**Goldfish are very meditative and I really want a new fishtank setup. Before the end of the year. It's a goal.
***And starting over AGAIN, because I realized something about the structure that wasn't working and how to fix it right AFTER I did the chapter plan, and now it no longer applies, so...