It's no surprise that the idea for my first novel came from my love of music. I mean, I LOVE music. I consider it a soundtrack to my life. If I'm in the car, I must have driving music. When I'm working in my 'real job', I have classical music on in the background while I'm writing reports. When I'm writing, music is playing. Not just any music, though. Music that helps me get in touch with my characters and with the plot.
There's something about music, I believe, that gets deep in your soul and helps you tap into creativity. I'm currently reading Oliver Sacks' Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain, Revised and Expanded Edition. Sacks is a neuropsychiatrist. He tells stories (case studies actually) about the remarkable, mysterious and often miraculous relationship between music and our brain. It's a fascinating read.
So what type of music do I listen to while I writing this book? Lots of classical music. My main character is a classical pianist, so I've spent many enjoyable hours exploring the character's personality and who she would be as an artist. What type of music would she play? How would she play the piano? Intricately with technical poise? Or expressively with passion flowing out of her fingertips? I decided the latter. And that has informed what music she likes to play. That means I've been listening to lots of Beethoven, Chopin, Mendelssohn, and the rest of the boys from the Romantic Era. Anything with lyrical, song-like melodies that are dynamic and have the ability to pull heartstrings is on the playlist.
Classical music has been instrumental (pardon the pun) in inspiring me to write and connecting me with the characters in the book. But the characters in this book have other musical tastes. It's so fascinating to be able to go on a journey with the characters and be musically inspired through them. Cool, eh?
What is the musical soundtrack of your life? I'd love to hear your thoughts and comments.