Music, Stories, and Much Appreciation

I’m going to be honest: I had no idea what to post today. Much as I would have liked to post pictures of something uplifting like signs of spring, I have none to show that aren’t man-made, and how depressing is that? I thought about bumping Tuesday’s post up to today, but that just seemed like cheating. Random facts about myself? Who cares, right?

But today demanded something, if only because this blog has reached 100 followers, and we need to party.

Not a huge number by most standards, no. But I didn’t expect more than about five, so this is big. And I’m blessed with some of the best blog readers around. Really. I never expected to have people commenting on my posts the way you do, and I love it. You always have something to add, or some way to make me smile, and I appreciate that. There’s no reason you all should want to be here reading my ramblings and word-vomit on a regular basis; I’m nobody special, especially when it comes to the writing stuff. I’m an amateur, a nobody, but you folks encourage and inspire me every day, here and through your own writing.

I’m going to stop before I tear up. What I’m saying is, thank you. All of you, whether you comment or lurk. I’m glad you’re here.

*AHEM*

So, what to do today, besides get disgustingly mushy over a group of people who are mostly strangers to me?

A party needs music, right? And music is important to writing. THEME BONUS!

I know from reading your blogs that many of you have songs that in your minds represent your characters in some way. Many of you have entire play-lists devoted to each of them, a feat which requires more attention and organizational skills than I possess. There are several songs that remind me of my characters, too; I won’t go into all of that here, but I’ll share one that gave me a strange experience, and that I continue to love. It would be great if any of you wanted to share your own songs and experiences in the comments (and no judging people based on music they love, please. I hate that.)

Let’s rewind back to November. There I was, typing like mad for NaNoWriMo, trying to get a first draft of Torn out into the computer. I’d just got my iPhone back in the summer and was LOVING it. You see, I’d never had a working iPod or MP3 player, so having all of my favourite music at my fingertips was just blowing my mind. Yes, I’m easily amused.  I was having fun buying songs I liked on the radio and then exploring more from those same artists.

I had a few Marianas Trench songs already, and spent some time listening to iTunes song samples for others. Hey look, there was a song called Ever After! How nice. Sample was interesting, I bought the song. Because, hello, affordable music.

I listened to it. I freaked out. Seriously. If you remember looking out your window one day late last November and seeing something weird flailing about, that was me. I was out there. Freaking.

Why? Because I could have sworn the song was about Aren. Not just about him, but about the story I’d written, the one I was working on, and (just to really melt my brain), a couple of lines that could symbolically reference something planned for book 3.  The emotional tone is bang-on for the character. Not only that, but “Ever After” is one of the threads that runs through Bound and ties things together, thematically speaking.

HOLY CRAP.*

It’s kind of a weird piece in some ways. It’s one of these songs they do that takes bits and pieces of others on the album and smooshes them together to make something that works. I kind of love that idea, but that’s not the point. The lyrics probably don’t mean much to some people, and to others they’ll mean something that, oddly enough, is not related to my effing books (I know, shut up about it already, right?)

It’ll never be a single, that’s for sure. But it opens an album that’s been getting me through a lot of writing sessions. I don’t know why I find this music so relaxing when most of my real-life stress is caused my yelling and whining, but I do. 😉

Want to hear it? You don’t have to, it’s OK. But if you’re curious, here you go. Oh, and fair warning, there’s a CUSS WORD. I have a strange and disturbing kind of love for the way Josh Ramsay says f*ck, but some of you might not appreciate it so much. 😉

There you go. Probably means nothing to you, right? That’s what I thought. I love that about music, though. It’s a different experience for every listener, and meanings change based on our own experiences, mind-sets, and emotional states. A song that makes you think of a book you’ve read or a character you’ve written might make me think of something from my childhood, or someone I knew in high school. Maybe you love it, and I get nothing out of it. There’s so much room for interpretation. Also, music is kind of a mystery to me. I appreciate it, I like what I like, but as to how it’s written or why the sounds work together? You might as well ask me about astrophysics. I have no clue.  But I can still appreciate it, even if my musical preferences aren’t impressively obscure.

So there you go. One song that would have caused me great embarrassment if I’d been in public when I first heard it, and that continues to give me chills.

Your turn!  One song, one character, and tell us why you make that association. Also, some good party music, if you’d like to throw that in there. Bring your best party hat, fancy cupcakes, whatever your drink of choice is, and let’s celebrate you guys. Because you’re the most bestest. 🙂

*CRAP is not the word that was in my mind, I’m just trying to keep it civil, here.

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About Kate Sparkes

Kate Sparkes was born in Hamilton, Ontario, but now resides in Newfoundland, where she tries not to talk too much about the dragons she sees in the fog. She lives with a Mountie, two kids who take turns playing Jeckyll and Hyde, two cats, an intentional boxer and an accidental chihuahua. She's the author of the bestselling Bound Trilogy (mature YA Fantasy). www.katesparkes.com View all posts by Kate Sparkes

12 responses to “Music, Stories, and Much Appreciation

  • L. Marie

    First of all, congrats, Kate!!!! Thanks for celebrating with that song. Good one!!! I wish you all the best! And as for songs, I can’t help thinking of Cyndi Lauper’s 80s hit: “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.” Though I’m writing medievalish fantasy, it fits my main character’s mindset before she embarks on the road to change.

  • whiteravensoars

    Congratulations on 100 followers!!! It is always exciting to see your words touch people.
    I really enjoyed that a song, I am now on a quest to listen to more of them, having never heard them before!

    I actually have a playlist for my novel in the works. Some of the songs I didn’t know before a search for lyrics that touched on how my character views the world. There are a few in there, for more than just my main character, but after less than an hour I put together a pretty cool playlist that really helps me when I am not really able to just fall into my story. http://www.playlist.com/playlist/23894140171#a/r_03/Uws/ And yeah, some of the songs are strange, but they all just kinda fit.

  • Elizabeth Collins

    All that you are by the goo goo dolls! It’s my two love birds theme song. like most songs I apply to characters it usually involves two and it’s sort of a conversation between them. But I can rarely find a song that is exclusively one sided, there are parts of the song that work for one or the other…. so it’s kind of like they get their own verses to sing back and forth. When I hear the songs I actually imagine them doing this, lol. I’m weird! This happens all the time… or if I’m not doing that I’m imagining the music video I would make for that song!

  • Arlene

    I love music – I love to write, but I can’t write when listening to music. I find it distracts me. I didn’t mention that I also LOVE to dance and anytime I hear music I just start moving (even if just a little at the shoulders). It’s very difficult for me to stay focused that way, so I write in silence. Every now and then, though, I do hear a song when I’m driving or something that makes me pause and think of a character, which is pretty neat!

  • Jae

    For my main character Logan, I think “Somewhere I Belong” by Linkin Park sums up a lot of his story (a good friend suggested the song to me after reading some of my novel). I’ll post a link below. But congrats on 100 followers! Proud to be one of them. 🙂

  • Blog Challenge Day 5: Musically Inclined | disregard the prologue

    […] I like Marianas Trench. Well, those of you who have been here for a month or two. You know about Ever After and Sing, Sing (and yes, I’m counting that as number 1 and 2, just try to stop me).  There […]

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