Let’s talk about inspiration. For writers especially, it seems that inspiration can come from a variety of sources. From a family member, to a cause, to even a memory, inspiration can be found at any time or place.
Today we have author Jolina Petersheim, author of The Outcast and The Midwife, sharing her musical inspiration—the playlist that helps her through rough times and writer’s block (or did before toddler naptimes came into play!). Perhaps you’ll find a song on her list that encourages you too. As a special treat, we’re giving away a 25-dollar iTunes gift card. Enter below and leave a note in the comments about the music that puts you in a good mood and brings you creativity!
Two years ago, before my daughter, Miss A., was born, I could not write without some kind of instrumental music in the background, preferably a soundtrack.
However, when Miss A.’s napping, I would rather suffocate myself than give in to a cough or a sneeze or do something frivolous like run the washing machine, so I in no way risk listening to music in case it wakes her up.
If I get to write at a coffee shop or out on the front porch, though, I still love delving into the soundtracks that are so inspirational when writing those beautiful, tension-filled scenes.
Here are a few of my favorites:
1. Last of the Mohicans: “The Kiss” or “Promentory” (a slightly longer version with more instruments)
I love this song so much that I had a group of young violinists perform it while my husband and I were declared husband and wife. It was a beautiful moment.
2. Braveheart: “A Gift of a Thistle” and “Freedom/The Execution/Bannockburn”
3. Gladiator: “Elysium,” “Honor Him,” and “Now We Are Free”
4. Jane Eyre (2011 version): “Wandering Jane” and “Waiting for Mr. Rochester”
5. Sense and Sensibility (1995 version): “To Die for Love” and “There Is Nothing Lost”
My best friend, Misty, and I have watched this film countless times over the years. I am most certainly Marianne and she is Elinor, but we’re balancing each other more and more the older we get. (We’ve been friends for twenty-five years.)
6. Pride and Prejudice: “Liz on Top of the World” and “Darcy’s Letter”
7. Titanic: “Never an Absolution” and “Hymn to the Sea”
8. Little Women: “Orchard House” and “For the Beauty of the Earth” (voice).
Misty (mentioned above) had “For the Beauty of the Earth” performed at her wedding by a renowned group of vocalists. I was downstairs waiting for my cue to ascend, and—holding my then-four-month-old daughter, the flower girl—I started sobbing while listening to that song, remembering everything we had gone through to reach such a “soundtrack-worthy” moment in our lives. The Outcast, my debut, is dedicated to Misty, a cancer survivor who’s been in remission now for six years.
Writers, do you enjoy writing to music? If so, can you share a few of your favorite songs?
Let us know in the comments! For more fiction fun, stop by our Crazy4Fiction blog!