Monday, November 30, 2009

Happy Holidays!

So here we are, Thanksgiving is over (how did that happen?!?!) and all the rest of those special days are coming up. I can't believe it is whipping by so damn fast. I'm done Christmas shopping. I can't believe it myself, but it's true. And we are fully decorated as of today. How much do I love having a kid who is old enough to really help now? SOOOOOOOO Much! And I finished a book for the first time this year. Woo-hoo!!! I succeeded at NaNo, so I have that to be thankful for and friends and family that rock!

I hope you and yours had a great Thanksgiving if you celebrate and that you enjoy to the fullest of your heart the upcoming holidays, be they Hanukkah, the Solstice, Kwanzaa, Christmas or others I am not aware of.


Monday, November 23, 2009

Music Galore

So I was talking to two friends Megan Hart and Victoria Smith (and yes I am name dropping!) about the music thing from the last post. Now Megan has some songs that are can show up on nearly every book she writes and frequently has the play lists available to individual books on her own blog. She has songs that she listens to depending on the mood and tone of the book or even the scene she is putting together. And Vicki pretty much said the same thing. She did mention also that she has a new song she loves by Dave Matthews and Kenny Chesney called "I'm Alive" that she has begun playing before she gets to work on projects because it is uplifting and can get her started.

Back with Megan, she said the music changes with the different books depending on the tone and even the time setting (don't quote me on that one as I wasn't taking notes). Vicki has certain songs that appear in each of her works. I believe they each use iPods but maybe you want to go to their blogs and ask them :)

I personally end up playing one CD at a time because I have a boom box in my office that only holds one CD. I've been too lazy to bring my iPod in here and I like being able to control what I'm listening to. But I do feel that certain songs can bring down the writing or the mood while writing. I currently have been listening to Jason Manns who is pretty upbeat. And then I put in Perfect Circle. Totally different keys and words and thoughts and I found myself not as bouncy while writing.

What do you listen to and how does it affect what you're doing?


PS. Can I please just say that no music station should be playing 24 hour Christmas music yet?!?!?! It's not even Thanksgiving people!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Working to music

Now I know a lot of people do this and I find it interesting that these two forms of art go so well together. A while ago I had to have absolute quiet to write. If there was music on I started singing to it or more than once I would type the words I was hearing without thinking about it. Made for some interesting manuscripts with words just in there with no purpose. I scratched my head more than once in the revision process.

So all was quiet on the writing front. I would work without any sound. At some point though, I began writing with a movie on. I'd have Lord of the Rings going in the back or maybe King Arthur with Clive Owen (Holy hell can you say YUMMY!). And the movie would have absolutely nothing to do with my writing. Since I normally write funny stories of the fluffy variety, I wasn't looking for inspiration or battle tactics. But I liked dark movies and would purposely put one on that I had seen a million times so that I wouldn't get distracted.

Which then moved me to write with TV on in the background. Because I had seen LoR a trillion times at that point and even if it didn't distract me, it was starting to annoy me something fierce. With the TV I'd pop on the History Channel which I love and watch snippets between typing furiously. It worked for a while.

But then I went to my annual retreat. There are no TVs there and I'd have to watch a movie on my laptop which makes it pretty impossible to type. I guess I could have brought the mini-DVD player. But then my husband gave me his iPod.

I thought it was useless to upload all my songs because, my word!, did it take forever! And I have hundreds of CDs. I always loved music, grew up with it on ALL THE TIME, so I have pretty eclectic taste and a desire to have everything with me. Because really, what if I decide in the middle of a scene that I must hear The Legendary Pink Dots and I didn't put it on the iPod? But here came the husband again, pushing me out of the way and telling me he would upload everything.

I arrived at the retreat thinking I would listen a little then get to work. But lo and behold, I started typing and bopping out at the same time. I let the tracks run for the most part on auto shuffle (excpet that the hubby left some Burl Ives and Disney's Snow White music on there which were quickly skipped). I worked faster and harder with the music on.

All this to say that just because something doesn't work right now doesn't mean it won't later. Or that what works now might need to be revisited at a later time. It's all about trying stuff out and not closing your mind to the possibilities.


PS I had a much longer post on this but I'm going to wait til next Monday to explore what some people call soundtracks to their books. Tune in next week!

Monday, November 09, 2009

It's Monday, baby!

So I said a long time ago that I was going to blog on Monday night, even wrote it in a friend's notebook to please kick me if I didn't and yet here I am never blogging on Monday. I'd say weird, but it obviously isn't :)

So it's Monday and I'm blogging. Blogging, blogging, blogging. Oh, you wanted me to actually say something witty or insightful? Something with meaning? Hmmm. What a concept :)

I'll try.

I'm just trying to get myself back in the game now in a lot of ways. I have not been writing as I used to now that I have a day job. I haven't been submitting the way I used to because I haven't been writing because I have a day job. I haven't been getting requests and sending additional material out because I haven't been submitting because...well, you get the idea.

To put an end to this THE HOUSE JACK BUILT scenario, I joined NaNoWriMo and have been consistently writing every night but Wednesday since I started. About 2K a day. Not too shabby. And maybe it will give me a book I can send out because I submitted because I wrote despite having to have a day job :)