Music To Write By

So, I know there are authors who need absolute silence to write. I think you'd have to straightjacket me and put me in a padded room if silence descended on my life. You see, with four kids and three dogs, life around here is anything but quiet. And if it *is* quiet--there's trouble. LOL Let me also state there are some songs/artists that I cannot write to because the music pulls me out of the story. The bands I listen to while writing are ones that have a natural rhythm that somehow matches the pace of the story and lyrics/beats that aren't so distinct that don't create dissonance. One of my favorite bands, Fireflight, is releasing a new album March 6, so I thought I'd share their debut single for that album...then share with you what songs/albums I listened to while writing various books. I wasn't sure I could remember, but as the albums played, pieces of story came to mind. Without further ado, here is Fireflight's new single, STAY CLOSE, from their NOW album (releases 3/6/12): For Talon and Trinity, I've been using a playlist that included 12 Stones and The Letter Black. For Firethorn, I was able to find a groove with Kazi mostly when I listened to Fireflight's Unbreakable album. For a speculative story, Tej, I've been listening to the soundtrack for (get ready for this) Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. Don't laugh. The score is done by Hans Zimmer. Amazing music. Always puts me in the mood to write. Check it out:

Do you listen to music while you write or read? If so, what's pumping through your speakers/headphones/earbuds?


Surrendered or Fighting?

I'm a writer and the way I work through things it to, well, write. So lucky ducks that you are, you get to hear my thoughts today.

Today, I got some news that proved pretty devastating. It's not just bad news. It holds the potential to be career altering. Life changing. After the boom got lowered, I went through the stages of grief: denial, anger...but I never made it past bargaining. Because who am I supposed to bargain with? See, here's my "problem," (which really isn't a problem): I committed to the Lord that I would be surrendered to His will. I said, "Whatever you want Lord, that's what I want too." I've been around the block enough to know the "danger" of those words. I've seen and lived beneath God's sovereignty. I've been abused. I lost both of my parents by the age of 29. My husband and I lost the first home we ever owned to foreclosure when the technology bubble burst in 2001. All those things happened, despite me begging God to change/prevent them. So, when today's news came, when the waves of this hurricane-strength storm crashed over me (how's that for drama), I cried. I ranted at God. And I told my husband I was having a hard time not being angry at. God. He said--it's okay, he can handle it. Very true. But my good buddy Jim Rubart called me. Talked to me. Encouraged me (check out his post on NovelRocket from yesterday--intriguing, isn't it?). And over the course of our conversations, the anger bottomed out. I told him--ya know, either I'm surrendered to God's will or I'm not. And if I *am* surrendered, how can I be angry? Because this is God's will. As Jim said, "Gods in this somewhere."

Think of an attic. Unfamiliar objects blocking your path. You stumble. You trip. You cut your hand on a loose nail. But just because you can't see where you are, or where you're going, doesn't mean it's worthless. You just have to find the treasure.

Did this news today go the way I wanted? Nope. It sure didn't. Yeah, I'm hurt. Yeah, I'm disappointed. Absolutely I want to stamp my foot and tell God it's not fair. But this is what I asked for--a shut door, if it wasn't right. For God to lead me, for HIS WILL to rule in my life. So, how can I persist in anger? How can I be angry if I am surrendered? The truth is, I can't. If I am angry still, if I rail at Him, then I am not surrendered. I'm fighting. Check out Romans 8:7-8 "For this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God's law; indeed it cannot, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God." I don't know about you, but I don't want to be *hostile* to God. Therefore, I surrender that anger borne out of heartache. Pick up the dregs of my courage and keep going.