Saturday, August 10, 2013

Inspiration Week: Music

Special Note: Mother Nature threw a bit of a tantrum last night, and rather buffed my internet connection into oblivion. So this post is a day late. But here it is, all the same!

Hello, internet!

This week, The Larkin Lair is going to present you with a special treat*. Every day, leading up to Saturday, I am going to put up a post discussing the things that most inspired me as I began writing my series, Lorelei, Once. Then, on Saturday--which I think we can all agree is the best day of the week--I will post the first chapter from Book 1: Siren.

Today, we'll be discussing music.

I believe that there is at least one type of very real magic in our world: Twerking.

Just kidding!


The right song can change the world that moves inside of you--the one no one else can see. And the remarkable thing about this art form is that it can effect each individual in such different ways. One person might find Korn relaxing, the next might find them vulgar to a fault. One person might find a deeper understanding of themselves in Taylor Swift's lyrics, the next might...not.

I happen to be a very visual thinker. I've met people--other writers--whose thoughts organize themselves as if they are being hammered out by a typewriter. But my ideas are scenes; like clips from a movie that's never been filmed. The act of writing, then, is just me describing what I see, and reacting to the feelings I can sense in my characters, who in turn feel like very real, dynamic, flawed people to me.*

Music, then, is sort of a reverse soundtrack for me: I shoot the music video in my head based on the feelings that the song gives me, and then I write down an explanation for what I've imagined. Does that make any sense? Probably not.

The music inspires the imaginary film which inspires the writing. Is that any better? Again, probably not. It's a bit difficult to explain without getting to lalalacious.

So let's get on to the part where I list the unofficial soundtrack for SIREN. Once upon a time, I carefully selected from my 'Lorelei' playlist a set of songs, which I organized, burned onto CDs, and handed out to my Betas as a special bonus gift to go with the completed novel they were reading for me.

The burned CDs didn't work. But I'll not allow that effort to be wasted!! If you'd like to listen to each song, I'm afraid you'll have to Youtube hunt for them. I'd love to post them up here for you easy listening pleasure, but Blogger just doesn't roll that way, and the site might actually collapse if I posted this many Youtube clips on a single page.

SEVEN DEVILS by Florence + the Machine
When the novel is made into a movie by Joss Whedon, this will be the song they use for the previews.

BIRD SONG INTRO by Florence + the Machine

ASSEZ VIF-TRES RYTHME by Lucia Micarelli
I love the mischievous sounds this woman can create with strings.

ROSIN THE BOW by Ashley MacIsaac
If you've ever wondered what the difference between a violin and fiddle is...listen to Ashley's music, then listen to Lucia's.

UNRAVELING by Alela Diane
 Alela Diane, aside from having the best name ever, has such...feely music. Wholesome, simple, gentle, but lingering. She's not paying me to say this, by the way.

AURORA (EXCERPT) by Lucia Micarelli

ELEMENTS by Lindsey Stirling
If I were to attach an instrument to our siren's identity, it would be the violin, and Lindsey Stirling would be playing it.

FLOAT by Flogging Molly
This is one of those songs that, the first time I heard it and every time since, seizes me by the throat and shakes me down for stray tears. It is highly appropriate for the rebel characters--the Meridian Archers--in SIREN.

MOON AND MOON by Bat for Lashes
Throughout the novel, our leading lady, the siren, finds herself alone--even once she's surrounded by the human characters. Bat for Lashes has a very lonely, echoing sound that fits these moments perfectly.

THE HEART OF THE SEA by Flogging Molly
Same as 'Float.'

HUMAN by Oh Land
Oh, Oh Land. Whenever I start to lose track of the siren's voice, I listen to Oh Land. She has that sweetness in her voice, and a sort of innocence even as she sings of some slightly darker subjects.

TAKE ME BACK by Kongos
One of the favorite characters in the book is, in my mind, inexorably linked with this excellent band. Some of his better lines come directly from their songs.

COSMIC LOVE by Florence + the Machine
This song directly inspired a stargazing scene that I rather love.

BEFORE THE END by The Levellers
Another heartbreaking but strangely hopeful song that belongs to the Archers.

WOLF & I by Oh Land
This song may as well be the anthem of the siren and her favorite human.

WING-STOCK by Ashley MacIsaac
This song is what brought the Meridian Archers to my mind--I saw them quite clearly, though their backstory didn't follow them until a while after.

SLEEP ALONE by Bat for Lashes

HOWL by Florence + the Machine


WHAT THE WATER GAVE ME by Florence + the Machine
This is the song that made the siren who she is. She is very much designed to look like Florence Welch, and without this song, she would be a very different character. I'm pretty sure that Flo is a modern siren, herself.

*I recognize that when I talk about my own writing, I sound more like a loon with imaginary friends than anything else, but I don't apologize. That's just how I roll.

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