Music I write to – Innocence

I’ve written this post many times. Pages and pages of it. I’m laughing now because I’m trying to spare everyone that kind of background. All of that is important to me, but maybe you all don’t have to read through it all, too.

So I’ll skip all of it for now. Lucky you all, you just get this stuff. I hang here a moment because I really want to tell all the background stuff, because this stream-of-consciousness stuff in blogs helps me to identify parts of myself I really want to know. Know and grow.

But another time.

Suffice it to say that I love music. Music drives how I feel most of the time, in many parts of the day, in almost everything I do, including writing. When I write, I try to find a song that drives how I want to feel for that scene. I feel like the emotion it brings out in me also comes through in the scene, in the characters, in my voice, in a thousand small details I can never quite capture in the page. I put on my headphones and put that song on repeat.

(Side note, I’ve done the same thing reading. Put in a song, an album, maybe for background noise, and listen to it while I read a book. I can almost give the song I’ve listened to a good amount of books I’ve read. The whole Star of the Guardians series from Margaret Weis was read to Mr. Big’s Lean Into It. On a compact disc player… wow does time fly.)

Skipping onward. I went back to school in my middle years to see if I could get a degree. In database management, back then. And while I’d written my whole life up until that point, I still didn’t know if it was something I could do.

Part of that degree was an English Class that had us read and write on a piece of American Literature. I’ll save the name of the story for now, just to keep a debate from popping up, but the work struck me. There was a hopelessness to the lives of the people in the story that would never go away. Never. There was death, and sacrifice for nothing, no gain, and holding on to something long after a person knew they would die for it. There was pain, such pain, and the whole time I read the piece, and then wrote my essay on it, I listened to Innocence, by the Airborne Toxic Event.

The professor at the time, after reading my essay, wrote a kind comment on it. Something to the effect that I should be a writer. Which, ultimately, is what I wanted to do, I just didn’t know at the time that it was something that was possible. Because I was in this world of getting paid by the hour, or in the military, by the year. I was paid for work I put in, not for what I could build creatively.

Aaannnddddd skipping on. Again.

So sometimes, when I write something I want to have that kind of feel, that’s the song I play. Innocence is one of the most painful songs I can feel, that pain (for me), goes into my story, my scene, my characters. Sometimes I get really emotional, and can feel the sadness pour out of me and into the words on the page. I can feel the characters get torn apart by something out of their control, and the sadness of the aftermath.

And then I know it’s something powerful.

Give it a listen yourself. Maybe to one of my stories. Keep the circle going.

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