1. Mouthwash
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    Mouthwash Member

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    Do you listen to music while writing?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Mouthwash, Nov 16, 2013.

    If so, what sort of music helps you? Does it vary based on subject matter? Or does it become a distraction?
     
  2. Thomas Kitchen
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    Thomas Kitchen Proofreader in the Making Contributor

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    If I just want to listen to music generally, then I'll pick something I can't sing or hum along to, like Jazz. But if I'm working on a scene, then I'll listen to music on YouTube in that certain style - sad, action-packed, etc. It helps me to feel the emotion and drama of the scene far more.
     
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  3. Patra Felino
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    Patra Felino Active Member

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    Yes. 80% of it is classical. I definitely prefer lyric-free music when I'm writing. I don't want someone distracting me with thoughts of foxy ladies if I'm trying to describe a tree or something.
     
  4. Wyr
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    Wyr Active Member

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    Nooooooooo, definitely not.

    I've tried it in the past, but I'm ADD and am way too easily distracted by that sort of thing. Occasionally if I'm having trouble getting into the right mindset for a certain scene I'll listen to something whose style reflects the type of emotion I'm trying to convey, before I start writing. It helps "get me in the mood" without preventing me from concentrating.
     
  5. MmePlanetKIller
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    MmePlanetKIller Member

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    I Listen to Wikipedia. It's musical enough to be pleasant, yet not so musical as to be a distraction.
     
  6. Patra Felino
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    Patra Felino Active Member

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    I had no idea that page existed. Help yourself to a like!
     
  7. kitsune4
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    kitsune4 Member

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    I listen to music. But anything else (like movies, tv) will be too distracting. Music I am unfamiliar with can also be distracting but usually I find I work better with at least some background music rather than total silence.
     
  8. HarleyQ.
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    HarleyQ. Just a Little Pit Bull (female)

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    I'm of that sub-group of humans who breathe both air and music, so I'm either listening to music or listening to music while I write. One or the other. It has to fit the overall theme of the book, though, otherwise I'll write too dark or too light.
     
  9. Simpson17866
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    Simpson17866 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Either instrumental (Beethoven, Murray Gold, Bach...) or not in English (Beethoven, Murray Gold, Blutengel...), but lyrics I can understand throw me off.
     
  10. A.M.P.
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    A.M.P. People Buy My Books for the Bio Photo Supporter Contributor

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    I personally.enjoy Apocalyptica. The earlier pre-lyric albums.

    Lynn Flewling,.one of my favorite authors, actually thanks them in her book.

    Only sometimes, though. Most of the time,.I need focus to write as well as I can. Namely with narrative.and descriptions.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2013
  11. Laze
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    Laze Active Member

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    I can't do it. I find it too distracting. I get really into my music when I'm listening to it, and also with my writing. My mind can only handle one or the other.
     
  12. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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    Bach, Beethoven, Dvorzak in the morning. The National and like genre in the afternoon. Maybe some of that newage pure moods shit
     
  13. L.T.
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    L.T. Member

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    I love music and enjoy listening to it when I'm doing chores.

    When it comes to writing though, I'm like Wyr. No way can I concentrate on my writing while listening to music.
     
  14. TessaT
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    TessaT Contributing Member

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    I tend to find that I'm too distracted without music. Put on the headphones, and I can focus on whatever is in front of me, which would hopefully be my laptop.
    I listen to a little bit of everything, from J Pop & J Rock to Dance to Rock to Oldies. It should all fit the mood though. I can't listen to something sad when I'm supposed to be writing happy.
     
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  15. Aurin
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    Aurin Member

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    Absolutely I do, I can't write in silence. I have a playlist created of all the songs that remind me of my novel, and I play that when working on it.
     
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  16. Nilfiry
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    Nilfiry Contributing Member

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    I only listen to music before I write for inspiration or mood. I do not listen to music during writing. It is too distracting, without or without lyrics, especially because I only collect songs that makes me want to stop everything and listen to them.
     
  17. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    No, but I often use music to get my head in the mood for the scene I'm writing, just prior to starting.

    I was dealing with a tricky love scene recently and because I have a bad tendency to fall into 'telling' mode, I needed to try and figure out a way to make my language more sensual and poetic. I'm no poet. One of the characters, the POV in this case, is from a place that roughly equates to the Fertile Crescent, so I hunted through my collection to try and find something to set the mood. No joy. Then I came up with an idea. I used a film editor to throw together a load of black frames accompanied by the chosen track, and then went about captioning the track silent movie style. A bit of an effort, yes, but I managed to come up with some imagery, and a rhythmic element I wouldn't have otherwise.

    Vas - In the Garden of Souls.


    This set the tone I was looking for.
     
  18. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    I usually prefer instrumental music for when I do listen to music while writing. Sometimes it's classical; other times it's just some random instrumental I find on Youtube. This is just for first drafts, though. When editing, I prefer silence.
     
  19. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i do only if i want to 'be in' a place where the story is set and i've been before, so the local music will take me back there and bring back the sights, sounds, smells and people more vividly than just my memory alone can do...

    so, while writing about greece, i listen to bazouki, when a setting is in mexico, i put mariachi and ranchera cd's on, and if the story's about italy, out come the mandolin cds...

    i'd never listen to vocals in english while writing, to avoid the song's words affecting the ones i need to hear in my head...
     
  20. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    That was impressive.

    Anyway I listen to slow smooth hip hop, instrumental rock, and r&b music while I write. I specifically love the works of Eric Johnson and Nujabes. They're calming and smooth for the soul. Music that I won't compulsively sing along to but it great background ambience.
     
  21. Dazen
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    Dazen Active Member

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    I have a playlist, and most of them are depressing songs... :p
     
  22. Wild Knight
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    Wild Knight Active Member

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    I do tend to listen to music when I write... and I listen to J-pop and BGM music. :p
     
  23. Ragnar
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    Ragnar Contributing Member

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    I like to match the music with the kind of setting I want. If I want it eerie, I listen to eerie music, if I want it fast paced, I listen to fast paced music. Although I'm not sure whether it actually helps, I feel like it does ease me into the frame of mind I want to be in for writing that particular piece. For me personally, classical or instrumental music works best, because I won't get hung up on the occasional favored lyric and start singing. Recommendations: Erik Satie, Nujabes, Emancipator, Movie Soundtracks.
     
  24. Mouthwash
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    Mouthwash Member

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    So what specific songs help you concentrate or get ideas?
     
  25. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    'Stay' by Nas
     

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