Today we have a special guest post from fellow Carina Press and Here Be Magic author, Shawna Thomas. I tend to write in complete silence, mostly because I’m too lazy to find headphones and then settle on something to listen to. Shawna has it down, though. Listen to her, not to me on this playlist thing. I’m useless. Make her feel welcome, and be nice to her, okay?
About ten years ago or so I had a vivid dream. The kind that doesn’t leave you after you wake. Instead, my mind continued the story. I absently pondered writing it down but I was too busy. I was teaching, had small children… so I ignored the voices.
It was actually a song on the radio that kept the dream alive. It haunted me. It was almost as if it gave the characters voice. Or perhaps the characters gave the song further meaning, but it was the song that drove me to finally write the story.
And so I jumped into the world of publishing with both feet.
As the story progressed, so did the playlist of songs that would instantly send me into writing mode. It didn’t take long before I realized that I was not alone. Many, many writers—I hesitate to say all—have a playlist or a sound track for their works-in-progress.
I don’t know if it’s just me, but I find this fascinating. I have always loved music. Music has a certain power to cheer you up, to get your heart racing—even make you angry. Music absolutely affects your mood. I think it touches something primal inside you. I have clean-the-house music. Get-over-the-blues music, have-fun-with-the-kids music. (This entails a lot of silly dancing.) And of course, I have music for my books, the leave-me-alone-mommy-is-in-another-world soundtrack.
The songs don’t have to relate exactly to the situation or characters. I think it’s more the mood of the song, the way it makes the writer feel.
Just as music takes you to another place, I want my words to take you to another place. I want my story to take put you in a better mood. I want you to fall in love, get angry, and leave happy.
I think there is a certain magic in writing. There has to be for my words to leap across time and distance to touch readers, to create a believable place and likable, memorable people.
There’s a certain magic in music too. It makes sense that the two would twine together to create something more than the individual parts.
Oh by the way, that first book? It is now a four-book series. The first one, Journey of Awakening, came out on the 11th of this month. The next will be out mid-May!
Here is the song that inspired me: Jars of Clay-I Need You
And if you’re interested, here is the Journey of Awakening sound track:
- Evanescence – Weight of the World
- Red – Already Over
- Fireflight – Forever
- Breaking Benjamin- So Cold
Winner of a 2011 RT Reader’s Choice award for her debut book, Altered Destiny, Shawna Thomas has been making up stories ever since finishing GONE WITH THE WIND. Once she put her own ending in writing, there was no looking back.
Journey of Awakening, book one of the Triune Stones, is available here: