I have a complicated relationship to music – to speak with Facebook terms. It probably has something to do with me being highly sensitive to noise and light. In the mornings, for example, I can’t even stand people talking, and no lights can be on. It feels like my body is invaded by it.
There are many authors out there who cannot write if they don’t listen to music. I’ve tried. It stresses me out. When I write, I see for my mind’s eye the events taking place. With music on, that feeling of ‘reality’ that I experience together with my characters, is totally lost.
On the other hand, I need to listen to music when I cook. Without it, the ingredients and the cooking don’t work well together with me. What I listen to when I cook is the playlist I’ve made for the specific book I’m working on. It helps me think and it inspires me greatly. So, when I cook is when I’m most creative when it comes to bouncing ideas. I can stand there slicing and chopping and frying and have dialogues and monologues running out of my mouth like water. Later, these dialogues usually get into the book in one way or the other.
My husband, who is a GM for many different roleplaying games, uses music that gives a certain mood. The words in it is of no importance. For me, it’s vice versa. The words need to coincide with the events the song is supposed to represent. Every single song in the playlist is carefully chosen and it also needs to get into the right place among the other songs.
At the moment, it’s the playlist for ‘Of Darkness Born’ which has been played in our household more or less daily for the past 2,5 years… Thinking about it, I probably have to thank my husband for being so patient with me… Now, when ‘Of Darkness Born’ is going to the line editor, a new playlist is about to begin, and I am very excited about it.
Every book has a specific theme song. ‘In the Hands of the Unknown’ has ‘Who Can You Trust’ by Morcheeba, ‘Lost’s song is ‘Unforgiven II’ with Metallica, ‘Of Darkness Born’ has ‘Rosegarden’ by Lynn Anderson. Then, next book will be ‘The Living Wall’ which will have ‘Another One Bites the Dust’ with Queen – which probably gives you a feeling for how many of my characters will survive that story… ‘In the Shadows’ comes next and has ‘Dream On’ with Aerosmith. ‘A Crack in the Door’ has ‘Sound of Silence’ with Simon and Garfunkel (poor Sally…), and ‘Crossing the Line’s song is ‘When You Don’t See Me’ with Sisters of Mercy. The two last books don’t have a theme song yet, but I guess they will come to me when the time is right.