October 27, 2011 at 7:25 pm

Thursday Night Write – Music That Inspires You

So I was super excited yesterday to unveil the Prophecy of the Sisters Original Score now available on Itunes and Amazon. I thought it would be a great topic for TNW, because music is such a huge factor in my writing and my life.

I discovered a long time ago that writing to music really helped set the mood for my writing. Film scores, in particular, are very atmospheric and typically don’t have lyrics (I know some people can write to lyrics, but I can’t), so I’ve long been a fan if using them while I write.

One of the very first things I do when I start a new project is to choose a score that fits the mood I’m trying to create in my new book. Sometimes it takes awhile, but I’ve learned that it’s better to take the time to find the right music in the very beginning. Then I’m set!

Following are my favorite scores for writing. Share yours in the Comments!

Batman Begins – a quiet but very emotional, tense score by Hans Zimmer. He’s the man.

The Dark Knight – Zimmer used Batman Begins as a jumping off point for this one, but TDK is WAY darker and more edgy. It’s got some truly disturbing sounds and sequences. one of the most inventive film scores of all time.

The Village- quiet with a lot of classical violin. I wrote Prophecy of the Sisters to this one.

The Lord of the Rings (all) – sweeping, epic fantasyesque music. I used these to write Guardian of the Gate. Great for a high fantasy-type setting.

Legion – questionable movie but the soundtrack’s good for setting the mood in a dark urban fantasy. Plus, there’s some chanting. I like chanting.

Batman Arkham Asylum – yes, this is a video game score, but the line between film and video game music has really blurred with lots of highly-regarded film score composers now making music for video games. This is one of the game scores that most closely resembles a film score.

The Ring – creepy but not intrusive. I admit that I sometimes look over my shoulder when writing to this one. It’s the score I chose for the book I’m writing now.

What about you? What kind of music, if any, do you like to have in the background when you write?

<3

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8 thoughts on “Thursday Night Write – Music That Inspires You

  1. AE Rought says:

    I’m okay with lyrics. They become background noise for me. I’m kinda hooked on Burn Season, Nickelback, Shinedown, Pop Evil, some Godsmack. I write a lot of paranormal, as you can tell ^_^

    1. MichelleZink says:

      You’re so lucky! I WISH I could write to lyrics. I end up not listening to non-score music as much as I’d like because I write so much.
      <3

      MZ

  2. Jana says:

    I’m not too too fond of music without lyrics for writing, it’s good for some scenes, but for most I like music with lyrics. The bands that I basically listen to on repeat when I’m writing is 30 Seconds to Mars, Versaemerge, Paramore, Linkin Park, Panic! At the Disco and Flyleaf. I honestly don’t think I have deviated from those bands for the past like 6 months =P

  3. Katie Klein says:

    Great post!

    My playlist is full of Hans Zimmer, though I think Kenneth Zink may give him a run for his money. 🙂

    Sometimes I can do the lyrics, but sometimes it’s too distracting. I wrote most of Vendetta while listening to the Inception soundtrack.

    One of the first things I do before I start writing is gather songs. 🙂

  4. Scarlett says:

    Harry Potter scores are my favorite. 🙂

  5. krystal says:

    I’ll admit I’m very different. I don’t need to set the mood for writing I just start writing randomly for my twilight inspired diary and I just put on the music that I like at the moment. I actually do better when the music is with lyrics because as i sing along it lets me feel the emotion of the characters. Although I did just download not to long ago the Whole HP 1-7 scores. I listend to HP while writing a story for a hogwarts site. But after awhile i start getting bored with listening to the same stuff. so right now i”m taking different horror movie scores and making a playlist thanks to Michelle. Until the twilight movies came out I really never noticed the music in th background. but I’m starting to hear it more and more.

  6. Dana Lee Burton says:

    I don’t always have to have music when I write, but sometimes it does inspire me. When I listen to music, I picture almost a music video in my head, so it gives me ideas for scenes, conflicts, or characters. I listen to mostly pop or alternative, but occasionally I listen to movie scores. Anything that carries a lot of emotion!

  7. Erin M says:

    It depends on what I’m writing. Frequently, I do have songs with lyrics on my playlist–and often, I’ll listen to whichever song I think of as the “theme song” for my novel on repeat. It actually gets kind of annoying, but…there are some songs that just invoke the feelings I’m looking for.

    My playlists have such an eclectic mix. For the project I’m working on currently, I’ve got some Young International, Glee, Green Day (their 21st Century Breakdown album), Heyhihello, and (not so oddly) clips from a podcast.

    My favorite non-lyric music to listen to while writing…the Narnia soundtracks, the Harry Potter soundtracks, the LOTR soundtracks…Pirates of the Caribbean soundtracks…and the indie-made Hunger Games unofficial score.

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