There is nothing that inspires me more in my writing than the power of music. I can be suffering from writer’s malaise, a failing of words or ideas, and hearing the words of a song, will release a plethora of fresh ideas and direction. It really is uncanny, the connection that occurs. It often feels as if the music forces the computer to reboot, untangling the knots of inertia that are strangling creativity, and like an infusion of nourishment the brain’s neurons fire up and the engine once more chugs forward. I have pretty well convinced myself that there is no such thing as “writer’s block”, only a temporary clog that calls for a dose of writer’s Drano—musical catnip.
In every book I write there is always a song inspiring the emotion of a scene. Oft quoted, inserted, like a love object, it breathes life into the scene. In my first book, The One, my heroine Adelia’s marriage has imploded, she faces a bitter custody battle with her wealthy ex-husband, she is at the lowest point of her life. Her best friend, Detective David Weiss, is determined to help her pick up the pieces of her broken heart. Believing in her, he knows that she must fight to live again; that the curtain of darkness dropped into her life will disappear if only she can see her way through to pull the cord and raise it, flooding the room, hence her life with light.
He brings her a compact disc and the printed words of a song that he hopes will better express the depth of his feelings, whereas he fears the ineptitude of his words might fail. The songwriter is Peter Gabriel, the CD version I use is sung by P!INK and John Legend, the words are simple:
Don’t give up
‘Cause you have friends.
Don’t give up,
You’re not the only one.
Don’t give up.
She cries, they embrace, and she gains the fortitude to fight.
In the third book in The Only One Series, One More Time is Not Enough, which is in edit with my publisher Soul Mate Publishing, my hero and heroine, now divorced, are thrown together again and sparks fly. In a romantic scene, where what they still feel for each can’t be denied, they dance to John Legend’s “All of Me.”
Adelia hit a button on her iPod and the romantic lyrics of John Legend’s “All of Me” filled the silence. She lit candles, and then took a bottle of champagne from the wine fridge in the bar and poured two flutes with the bubbly vintage. Handing him a glass, they sipped and listened until their glasses were emptied.
My head’s under water
But I’m doing fine
You’re crazy and I’m out of my mind
She didn’t know if what she was doing was wrong or right, and she didn’t care. She felt an inexorable need to follow it through. She had once loved him so completely. Perhaps it was possible to love him again.
You’re my downfall, you’re my muse
My worst distraction, my rhythm and blues
I can’t stop singing, in my head for you
She stood inches from Miles, and when he opened his arms to her, she walked into them. She clasped her hands around his neck, and his arms encircled her waist, pulling her close to him. They slow-danced, turning in circles to the music.
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections
Give your all to me
I’ll give my all to you
“Did you pick this song for a reason?”
Cards on the table, we’re both showing hearts
Risking it all, though it’s hard
‘Cause all of me
Loves all of you
“What happens when it ends?”
“I don’t know. Maybe it doesn’t end. Maybe it just continues.”
“The song or us?”
She smiled, “The song.”
His brows furrowed.
She placed a finger on the deep vertical line between his brows, smoothing the tension away. “What if I said, us?”
“I’d think I was dreaming.”
“Why do you love me, Miles?”
“I’ve tried not to.”
“I know. Me too. I’ve tried not to love you.”
I give you all of me
And you give me all of you
“We belong together.”
“How do you know?”
“I just know.” His hands encircled her face, he bent to kiss her. “It’s playing again.”
Her eyes were closed, and her lips held a shadow of a smile. “Is it?”
“It is.” His kiss was like the song. It swept through her taking with it all of the debris of the past. She could feel his body tense against hers. She released her hands from his neck and slipped them beneath his shirt resting them on his strong muscular back, encouraging him.
It’s easy to understand why so much of our lives and memories, are linked to and recalled because of the lasting imprint of lyrics and notes; the creative coalition called music that reflects who we are, or where we were, at any given time in our lives.