Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Welcome Guest Blogger: Marguerite Arotin

Writing Soundtracks: Music To Type By

The most important thing I’ve learned about writing is that sometimes it helps to have that little extra something to set the mood. I know some of my fellow authors will hang pictures on their bulletin boards or desks. Some even burn candles with scents that match the scene they’re writing. As for me, I set the tone with music.

Now I know that music can distract some authors, or some will only listen to instrumental music because they fear the lyrics will work their way into their stories. As for me, I listen to whatever the mood or tone of my setting requires.

I recently completed the first draft of a WWII romance where big band music plays an integral role. My husband has a two disc CD set filled with stuff by Tommy Dorsey, Count Basie, and Glenn Miller. You bet I had that playing in the background as I typed away.

My time-travel romance, One Enchanted Summer, is set in the summer of 1962 just before the big British musical invasion. Who started that invasion? As everyone knows, it was the one and only Beatles. Since the original lineup has a guest role in One Enchanted Summer, I listened to them sing “Love Me Do” while I typed away.

My first published tale- The Locktender’s Daughter, was set along the Ohio and Erie Canal and I found a great CD filled with canal folk songs that I listened to while I typed away. The music really helped me feel like I was sailing along on one of those old packet boats.

Like I said, I know music doesn’t work for everyone. But it works for me and I think I have enough soundtracks in my CD collection to help me set the mood for wherever my imagination takes me. Look through your CD collection and maybe you’ll find the same. Or if pictures or candles are what you need to set the mood, then that’s great too. The important thing is to find what works for, what gets you in the mood to set your scenes and type away.

Visit Marguerite at her
website or on Myspace. Marguerite has a time travel romance, "One Enchanted Summer", released today from the The Wild Rose Press. You can watch her trailer here:


Judy Thomas said...

Thanks for an interesting post. I have to be careful about what I listen to (music or otherwise) because I WILL find myself typing whatever I'm listening to...which leads to some funny dialogue sometimes :-)

One thing I'll do is listen to music to set the mood BEFORE I write a scene. Especially love songs if I'm going to write a love scene, or sad songs if I have to write a sad scene.

Brandy said...

Since I am a huge music lover I think it's interesting to hear what music helped an author "set the scene". Thanks for the post!

Marguerite Arotin said...

Thanks ladies and I do hope you'll check out One Enchanted Summer, the tale that used mostly Beatles music to set my scene. I have the 1 Hits CD and even had my son signing to "Hey Jude" with me ;-). And even though PJ is only seven, he loves the Beatles too ;-).

Abbey said...

I love listening to music, but since I love to sing, it's pretty hard for me to concentrate on my work. :-) I usually have the TV on while I write just for background noise, otherwise that's it. :-)
I absolutely love the Beatles. One Enchanted Summer is an awsome story, since I had the pleasure of critiquing it. :-) I was born well after the sixties, but reading OES made me wish I'd been a part of the Beatles revolution. :-)