Friday, April 4, 2014

Discussion: Writing to Music

Welcome to another session of Bookish Discussions with Emily! This week I want to talk about writing to music. I have taken a little break from my work in progress to get all my school stuff together since I'm graduating in May *freaks out*! But now that I am getting back in the swing of things I've been listening to my old playlists and I wanted to discuss what other people listen to while they write or what kind of background noise they like to have.
Ambient Noise
Do you like writing at coffee shops but don't feel like putting on real pants today? Or maybe you're like me and writing at coffee shops is completely distracting because you can always find something to look at. Well the internet has provided you with the Coffee shop background sound. I love coffitivity because it gives coffee house, lunchroom, or just background noise to work to without having to leave the house. Studies have also shown this ambient background noise makes you work, stay on task, and can help you be more creative.

Maybe coffee house noise isn't your kind of thing, you would rather work outside in nature. The internet has got you covered there as well! I present to you Rainy day background sound. I like writing to this when I have a sad scene or when the weather changes in my WIP.
Authors and their Music
Recently I am have seen more and more authors on tumblr and their websites posting playlists their for books, characters, or specific scenes. I love this! If I really enjoyed a book then I want to know what the author was listening when they wrote it.

Maggie Stiefvater is my favorite author who posts playlists. I follow her on soundcloud and you can find playlists for Gansey, Adam, Raven Boys III and more! I like listening to her playlists because a lot of our musical tastes match up and I've discovered quite a few artists/songs that I love through her.

Becca Fitzpatrick has also released a playlist for her upcoming book Black Ice which comes out in October. It includes one of my favorites songs Seaside by The Kooks so I'm already biased in to liking this playlist.

These are just two examples do you have any other authors whose playlist you love to listen to? Let me know in the comments!
My Recommendations

My musical tastes are like the oceans tides. One minute I will be in to one thing and within the same day I can find myself hating that same song. It makes for a very long playlist. I'm also not saying my taste in music is good. I enjoy a very eclectic mix that doesn't translate well sometimes, especially because I have a love of rap. I like both the lyrical talent it takes to put together a flow and the hard hitting bass beats that are prevalent in the rap and R&B scene. But since this post is about what music you write to I thought I would share some of the songs I'm currently writing to. Keep in mind my WIP is about drug use, death and lifelong friendships.

High For This by The Weeknd
It's Not Your Birthday Anymore by Morrisey
Counting What Ifs by boyChild
Ecstasy by JJ
Dark Star by Jaymes Young (That many remixes of this song are great as well, especially the Milkman Remix)
Nothing Else Is Real by Makintosh Braun
The Drift by Blackmill (Actually, I listen to ALL THE BLACKMILL lol)
Running Up That Hill by Placebo
Spectrum by Zedd
I Can't Stop by Flux Pavilion (For only having 3 words in it this song is awesome)
Not On Drugs by Tove Lo

Actually, none of these songs are rap...just some dubstep, dance, and more melancholy songs.

Last Thoughts

No matter how you set your mood whether it is by music, ambient noise, or clearing a space in your head; I think it shows in an authors writing. I also think it also bleeds through in research and other papers. I recently finished up my writing option, which is required to graduate from law school. I could tell the sections I wrote to ambient noise compared to the introduction and conclusion which I wrote to a long mix by D.Veloped. Those sections had a much more lively spirit and drew the reader in to the heart of the subject matter which was my goal. Even if the rest of the paper had to be a more detached and academic.

Let me know in the comments what you like to listen to while writing, blogging, or just living life. If you have a playlist I would love it if you could include the link! I'm always trying to discover new artists and songs. 


  1. I'm going to have to check out some of those songs! I haven't heard of a few of them. I like to listen to music when I'm writing up blog posts, or when I'm commenting on other people's blogs. The fast paced music gets me going, and I end up getting through a lot of stuff. Plus, it blocks out my family, who are incredibly loud at times. I don't have a specific playlist. I leave my iPod on shuffle and let it play by itself. I do love listening to FOB's newest album though!

  2. Really like this post! Very different and enjoyable :)
    I like the idea of using ambient music - sometimes if I'm listening to songs I really like I end up singing along rather than working, which isn't the intended outcome, haha.

    I usually just listen to a lot of my favourite songs, such as Spirit Animal by Sleep Thieves (I think you'll like them) and most songs by Daughter (who are more melancholy).

  3. Interesting, I never thought about people using ambient music.

    I listen to music depending on what I'm writing. If it's a paper for class, then I don't want any distractions, so that means zero music. Ideally also zero noises, but living in a big town, that's not going to happen any time soon.

    If it's something else, for example a story or a blog post, then I usually listen to Westlife, which is my favourite group and I love their songs.

  4. I have to find the right music to go with whatever it is I'm writing. For reviews, however, I need total silence. I just need to concentrate more.

  5. I've found that writing to the Break of Reality Pandora station works well - it's instrumental rock, very nice to have music that isn't distracting. But my friend also introduced me to which is basically a white noise machine, but really nice. Anyway, I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks about this stuff!

  6. My writing music always changes as well. I write fiction well to slower musis (particularly Landon Pigg) and blog well to piano and guitar.
    I had no idea Maggie Stiefvater has playlists for her books! I'm reading the Raven Boys now and this is so awesome!!!

  7. I absolutely loved this discussion post. Thank you for sharing the information about soundcloud! ~Sheri

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