We’re talking about mentors and inspiration this week, and while I have had plenty of fabulous and supportive people in my life, my foray into fiction has been very much a solo act, in that other than my husband and a few early readers, I’ve forged on this path without the advice or mentorship of really, anyone. After 10 years of magazine writing and a lifelong love of books, I decided to challenge myself in a new direction, and the result was something I’m very proud of: THE VIOLETS OF MARCH.
Everyone knows that writing can be a very lonely and isolating experience. Still, I find it thrilling, just the same. I love the fun of being alone with my characters, my ideas (and a good cup of coffee and nice bar of dark chocolate to munch on). But I am never writing without music.
When I sit down to start a new fiction project, I’ve found it so important to begin with a playlist of songs (I usually have fun downloading a bunch of new music on iTunes) that set the mood for my story. With VIOLETS, which takes place in 1943 and present day, I put together a mix of songs that helped me channel my characters feelings, desires and emotions. Without those songs playing in my ear, I’m not sure I would have gotten them just right.
And, whenever I’m facing a bout of writer’s block (it totally happens), I turn to music first to jump-start my muse. And you know what? It works almost every time.
Would you like to see the songs that inspired THE VIOLETS OF MARCH? Here’s my partial playlist. And, I picked a very special song on this list to use in the book trailer, too. If you haven’t had a chance to see it, click here.
Do you listen to music when you read/write?