Music Monday – Love Runs Out – OneRepublic

Welcome to Music Monday! As many of you know, music contributes a great deal to my writing process. Whether it’s a song’s lyrics, beat, rhythm, or tone, I find myself constantly inspired by it.

writing-to-musicAs you might have (or might not have) noticed, I didn’t publish any blog posts last week. I decided to take some time off to relax, spend time with family, and work on my manuscript. It ended up being a great week. I took a day trip to Vail, visited the Denver Zoo with my nephews, and even won the Wicked lottery with my sister!

11666132_10102297028238983_2248675542357559971_nNot only did I have fun during my week off, but I made tons of progress with my new novel. I managed to write over 26,000 words in five days. Ahhh! Seriously, it’s amazing what you can do when you shut the world out and focus. Hopefully this major boost means I’ll be able to meet my goal of finishing a first draft by July 31st, when the first round of the NYC Midnight Flash Fiction Challenge kicks off.

Anyway, on to Music Monday! Today, I thought I’d share a song that helped inspire me as I wrote my booty off last week: OneRepublic’s “Love Runs Out”.

D96028B1249DC92023B3DF5A5443E7F9201421220339876The number one thing I love about this song is its rhythm and beat. It’s edgy, energetic, and even a little dark. Every time I listen to it, I close my eyes and get lost in the incessant thumping of the drums, piano, and cymbals. And every time it finishes, I realize I’ve thought of a new layer to my story. A new drama, a new twist, a new character trait, a new something.

one-republic-love-runs-out-music-video-2014As always, the lyrics provide oodles of inspiration as well. I didn’t really listen to them the first few times I played “Love Runs Out”, but then I Googled them and I realized they fit my story perfectly.

Ooh, we all want the same thing.
Ooh, we all run for something.
Oh for God, for fate,
For love, for hate,
For gold, and rust,
For diamonds, and dust.

I’ll be our light, your match, your burning sun,
I’ll be the bright and black that’s making you run.

5ee20a4a8ccff7886e0566fcd5604dc0If you’re looking for an energetic song with an amazing rhythm and inspiring lyrics, then check out OneRepublic’s “Love Runs Out”.

What song(s) are you in love with right now? Which one(s) offer you inspiration? Let me know! I’m always searching for songs that motivate my writing.

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Music Monday – Rachel Platten – Fight Song

Welcome to Music Monday! As many of you know, music contributes a great deal to my writing process. Whether it’s a song’s lyrics, beat, rhythm, or tone, I find myself constantly inspired by it.

writing-to-musicToday’s Music Monday is one of those unexpected treasures I stumbled upon while listening to music on YouTube last week. From the corner of my eye, on the sidebar, I saw “Fight Song”. I’d never heard of its artist, Rachel Platten, but I decided to click on it anyway. And I’m so glad I did. It’s amazing!

Rachel-Platten-Fight-Song-1500x1500The first time I heard “Fight Song” I thought, “Well, this is perfect for writers and anyone else pursuing a dream.” Most of us experience failure along our journeys, and many of us get so crushed by it, we begin to question everything: Our passion, our goals, our abilities. Some of us even wonder if we have the strength to keep fighting for what we want most. I know I have.

Then I listened to “Fight Song” again, and I realized it isn’t just for writers and dreamers. It’s for anyone who has (or ever will) hit rock bottom. It encourages people to get back up after being knocked down, to forget the naysayers, and to keep fighting for what makes them happy.

11275279_1585162291762075_1632774544_n“Fight Song” also provides great story fodder. Although I can’t get a ton out of it for the current story I’m working on (my characters are way too crazy to care about digging themselves out of the pits they’ve fallen into), there are still plenty of gems to use from it: Conflict and drama. Depression and sorrow. Determination and hope. Freedom and courage…The list goes on and on!

promoted-media-optimized_5508890014322And, as you likely suspect, the lyrics are what make this song so great:

And all those things I didn’t say
Wrecking balls inside my brain
I will scream them loud tonight
Can you hear my voice this time

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I’m alright song

3d80642a4708ae6f58e8489eaa366dc7So, whether you need a personal boost, or some motivation for your story, I strongly encourage you to listen to “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten.

What song(s) are you in love with right now? Which one(s) offer you inspiration? Let me know! I’m always searching for songs that motivate my writing.

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Music Monday – Cell Block Tango – Chicago

Welcome to Music Monday! As many of you know, music contributes a great deal to my writing process. Whether it’s a song’s lyrics, beat, rhythm, or tone, I find myself constantly inspired by it.

writing-to-musicFor the first time in a long time, I’ve been excited to sit down, open up a manuscript, and write. Besides loving my plot and crazy characters, I have music to thank for my surge in motivation. I’ve come across so many great songs lately! So many, in fact, I had a tough time deciding which one to choose for this week’s Music Monday.

After a lot of debating, I finally decided to go with “Cell Block Tango” from the musical Chicago.

cover-2Last week, I probably listened/watched this song on YouTube at least a dozen times. I couldn’t get enough of it! It has so many of the darker emotions and elements I need to feel while writing my story: Fury. Vengeance. Denial. Murder.

*cue evil laughter* 😉

What makes this song extra powerful is the performance of it. As I watch the dancers in the video below, I can see my characters and I can feel their wrath. Their twisted righteousness, their satisfaction, their spite…

So, I said to him,
I said, “you pop that
gum one more time…”
and he did.
So I took the shotgun off the wall
and I fired two warning shots…
…into his head.

So, if you’re looking for a song that brings out the dark side of your plot and characters, check out “Cell Block Tango” from the musical Chicago.

In case there are technical glitches with the video above, here’s another one that should work: “Cell Block Tango”.

What song(s) are you in love with right now? Which one(s) offer you inspiration? Let me know! I’m always searching for songs that motivate my writing.

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Music Monday – Addicted To You – Avicii

Welcome to Music Monday! As many of you know, music contributes a great deal to my writing process. Whether it’s a song’s lyrics, beat, rhythm, or tone, I find myself constantly inspired by it.

writing-to-musicLast week I finished the first chapter of my new novel…Yeah, I know, it took me forever. But, first chapters usually take me forever because 1) I like to jump off on the right foot, and 2) because I like to use them to brainstorm ideas for the rest of the novel.

Anyway, as I worked on chapters two and three over the weekend, I was happy I’d taken the time to consider my story’s major details. Not only did it make things easier and more fun, but it also helped me develop a new character–one who will be carrying the majority of the book’s burden.

Another thing that helped me develop this vital character was the song “Addicted To You” by Avicii.

Avicii-Addicted-To-YouThis song came on while I was at the gym yesterday and I couldn’t stop playing it! Over and over, I listened to “Addicted To You” while I jogged, my brain running almost as fast as my legs (well, maybe faster 😉 ).

Not only does this song have a great rhythm and flow to it, but its lyrics are perfect for developing characters who are dealing with matters of the heart.

tumblr_n46a0pU6li1s02iuco1_500For me, this song isn’t so much about love. It’s about the addiction–the obsession–love can create, and the darkness that can follow when it gets torn away or isn’t reciprocated.

I couldn’t live without you now,
Oh, I know I’d go insane,
I wouldn’t last one night alone baby,
I couldn’t stand the pain!

Anger, grief, madness–these are the types of emotions I feel while listening to this song. And they’re the exact emotions I need to feel while creating this character. They help me understand who she is. What her motives are. Why she makes the decisions she makes. Where she came from. Where she’s going. Etc., etc.

So, if you’re looking for a song that inspires the light or dark side of love, check out “Addicted To You”!

What song(s) are you in love with right now? Which one(s) offer you inspiration? Let me know! I’m always searching for songs that motivate my writing.

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Music Monday – Amen – Halestorm

Welcome to Music Monday! As many of you know, music contributes a great deal to my writing process. Whether it’s a song’s lyrics, beat, rhythm, or tone, I find myself constantly inspired by it.

writing-to-musicThis past weekend, I officially began working on my new novel. To help kickstart my journey, I listened to one of my new obsessions: “Amen” by Halestorm.

halestormintothewildlifecd_638The number one thing I love about this song is its attitude. It’s great inspiration to help me develop my protagonist, who’s anything but an angel. He’s rebellious, selfish, and arrogant. He does what he wants when he wants. And he refuses to be controlled by others. Basically, he walks through life giving others the middle finger salute.

And this song is perfect to inspire that kind of “eff you” character.

I  also really like “Amen”s lyrics. They inspire all kinds of emotions and ideas:

A fire’s gotta burn
The world is gonna turn
A rain has gotta fall
Fate is gonna call
But I just keep on breathing
Long as my heart is beating

Someone’s gotta hate
It’s never gonna change
Gets harder everyday
This is one hell of a place
Keep your heart from freezing
To keep yourself believing

If you’re looking for an energetic, rebellious song that’s full of attitude, then check out Halestorm’s “Amen”.

What song(s) are you in love with right now? Which one(s) offer you inspiration? Let me know! I’m always searching for songs that motivate my writing.

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Music Monday – Je Veux Vivre – Maria Callas

Welcome to Music Monday! As many of you know, music contributes a great deal to my writing process. Whether it’s a song’s lyrics, beat, rhythm, or tone, I find myself constantly inspired by it.

writing-to-musicAs I began writing a short story last year, I decided my protagonist would be an aspiring opera singer. After a couple of drafts, I realized I’d made a mistake and changed her to be an aspiring dancer instead. Even so, during those first few drafts, I did quite a bit of research about opera–mostly by listening to it. And I ended up falling in love with it. I’d listened to opera before, but not enough to become a fan. I became one then.

One of my favorites quickly became Maria Callas’s rendition of “Je Veux Vivre” from Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette.

hqdefaultThe thing I enjoy most about this song is its pacing. It starts off with a powerful punch, then pulls back and slowly winds back up to a powerful ending. Up and down, loud–quiet–loud, intense–light–intense…It’s all very dramatic and puts me in the right frame of mind to write.

Maria_Callas_La_TraviataAnother reason I like listening to this song is its emotions. I usually need music that elicits darker feelings (anger, misery, revenge, insanity, etc.), but this one has the opposite effect. There’s joy, wonder, excitement, life in “Je Veux Vivre” (translation: I want to live).

And even the darkest stories have those elements in them, even if it’s just for a single moment. Even if it’s because a character escaped prison, or successfully robbed a bank, or killed an innocent victim. Even if it’s a subtle, twisted, or pure version of positivity, positivity happen in every story.

3c76cc7ff4f93b91d21760c1a5b5194fSo, if you’re looking for a fun, dramatic, beautiful song, check out Maria Callas’s performance of “Je Veux Vivre” from Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette.

What song(s) are you in love with right now? Which one(s) offer you inspiration? Let me know! I’m always searching for songs that motivate my writing.

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Music Monday – Take Me Away – Avril Lavigne

Welcome to Music Monday! As many of you know, music contributes a great deal to my writing process. Whether it’s a song’s lyrics, beat, rhythm, or tone, I find myself constantly inspired by it.

writing-to-musicOn my way home from work last Friday, I decided to put my iPod on shuffle (1800+ songs). For the first half of my drive, nothing grabbed my attention. It all sounded the same and blah, blah, blah. Then a song I haven’t heard in years popped up and I was obsessed with it all weekend.

Avril Lavigne’s “Take Me Away” has so many of the components I need to get motivated: rhythm, tone, lyrics. I actually used to listen to it all the time while writing in the past, but–somehow–I’d forgotten about it. I’m so happy I stumbled upon it again!

Avril-Lavigne-Take-Me-Away-FanMade-Single-Cover-avril-lavigne-34235851-1833-1833My favorite thing about this song is its raw emotions. While listening to it, I’m able to experience anger, sorrow, desperation, defeat, frustration…And then I’m able to take those darker feelings and infuse them into my work.

And, of course, I love this song’s lyrics. Whether it’s one line or many, I always find something in “Take Me Away” to spark my imagination and help with whatever story I’m working on.

All the pain I thought I knew
All the thoughts lead back to you
Back to what was never said
Back and forth inside my head
I can’t handle this confusion
I’m unable; come and take me away

Avril-Lavigne-BlackStar-Concert-05So, if you’re looking for a song to help inspire those darker, rawer emotions, check out “Take Me Away” by Avril Lavigne.

What song(s) are you in love with right now? Which one(s) offer you inspiration? Let me know! I’m always searching for songs that motivate my writing.

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