By Nandy Ekle

My playlist. I love my playlist. These are the songs I have collected that tell the story of my life. One of the songs is the first song my husband and I danced to in high school. One of the songs our high school drill team had a routine to, and won a state competition with it.  Several of the songs are from movies I really enjoyed. Some are comical, some are lyrical stories, some are just flat out beautiful poetry with genius tunes.

However, my MP3 player doesn’t have all of my songs. I have a secret list of songs only on the computer. These are what I call my writing playlist. These are the ones that give me little glimpses of stories in my head every time I hear them. One is a Christmas story about a main character that gives away his heart, then realizes quickly they gave it to the wrong person. One is the story of a main character who says the best dream they ever had was the one in which they were dying. I have an instrumental piece that, although it has no words, paints very vivid pictures of medieval dungeon with prisoners about to be rescued by a hero dressed in an animal skin loin cloth and carrying a gigantic broad sword.

What I’m getting at here, and I know I say this fairly often, is let music dance through your brain. It can set the tone for what you’re writing. It can plant images and stimulate memories for you to expand on. Sometimes it can even provide enough of the story that all you have to do is put it down on paper.

My writing playlist is short but powerful. A couple of the songs I love to listen to when I write are Last Christmas, performed by Wham, Mad World, performed by Michael Andrews and Gary Jules, and Fire On High, performed by Electric Light Orchestra. What music inspires you when you write?

Congratulations. You have just received a post card from the muse.



Tag words: play list, MP3 player, Electric Light Orchestra, Wham


2 thoughts on “Soundtracks

  1. A secret writers playlist that’s on the computer; what a great idea! I haven’t figured out how to tune out the songs on the playlist that has nothing to do with what I’m writing. It’s very distracting. Since I’m writing an historical set in 1854 Texas, I find my Comanche character and the time period becomes more visual in my brain when I listen to Andrew Vasquez or David Maracle, both are Native American flute musicians. It’s important for writers to visualize their setting, smell the wood fire, hear the noises of the time, and totally disappear into the world they’ve created. Thank you, Nandy, for a great post.

  2. Pingback: Life’s Playlist…. Mad World by Gary Jules @garyjulesmusic | Notes from a Southern Kitchen

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