Some writers love nothing better than to pop on the earphones and crank up the music while they write. It energises them, gives them inspiration. I’m the opposite. I can’t write with distractions like music or TV on. But sometimes listening to the right piece of music can help set the tone for a particular scene.
I needed some mood-setting music when I was writing a pivotal scene in my first contemporary romance WHEN HARRIET CAME HOME. In my scene it’s night time and my hero and heroine, Adam and Harriet, are at a quiet lookout, dancing together under the stars. Music plays from Adam’s car. But what song were they dancing to? I wanted something emotional to match the scene and eventually found an evocative song by Melody Gardot called ‘Our Love Is Easy’.
I have to confess straight up that I’m not a fan of jazz, but I happened to catch a TV interview with singer-songwriter Melody Gardot and was intrigued by her story. An horrific accident put her in hospital for a year and left her with serious injuries, one of them making her hyper-sensitive to both light and sound. During her recovery she learned to play the guitar and began writing music. Her music has been described as ‘a blend of cocktail jazz and torch song’, and her singing is rich and soulful.
After I listened to ‘Our Love Is Easy’ several times, it made writing the scene in my book much easier and hopefully improved the emotional punch too. If you like smooth, cool jazz, or even if you don't, take a listen!