I love music but the only thing I play is the stereo. Also, I sing like crap but it doesn’t stop me from doing so when no one else is around.
What does music have to do with writing? For me the answer is everything. Whether I’m working on my novel, the blog or stuff for other websites/magazines there’s almost always music playing.
When I get stuck, I get frustrated and when I get frustrated it becomes difficult for me to focus on the prose I’m trying to bang out. Once I’ve hit that mental wall there’s one thing that always gets my creative juices flowing and that’s blasting some 90’s ska through my headphones.
Dictionary.com definis ska as,
a modern style of vocalized Jamaican popular music, which emerged in the 1950s as a blend of African-Jamaican folk music, calypso, and American rhythm and blues, notable for its shuffling, scratchlike tempo and jazzlike horn riffs on the offbeat.
It doesn’t matter if it’s Save Ferris, Smash Mouth, Reel Big Fish, Mighty Mighty Bosstones or No Doubt. Once that upbeat tempo starts blaring I’m usually bouncing in my chair or sometimes doing the worst mid-40’s white guy dance you can imagine. If I get writers block while sitting in a coffee joint I’m sure I look like a huge douche, but generally try not to care a whole lot about that.
If ska isn’t your thing, find whatever is and blast it. Some of my best ideas have come while I was taking a break from thinking and simply enjoying some excellent tuneage.
Another way I get ideas is to spend few minutes on Twitter or go through my Google Reader and skim my favorite blogs for ideas. Please note that I said to look for “ideas” and didn’t say to outright jack someone else’s shit. As my blogging friend, Aunt Becky of Mommy Wants Vodka fame, “Stealing gives you herpes.”
It doesn’t have to be on the computer or phone. In fact, walking away completely and grabbing a magazine (not an online one) or a newspaper while you flip on the radio is a great idea.
What I’m saying is look for things that speak to your creativity. I’m going to take a quick break to look at Twitter and then I’ll come back and give you a couple ideas I got while seeing what others have to say.
@Indydadblogger My daughter wants a freaking dog!
I’ve been thinking that what my novel may be missing is a dog and I now believe I’m adding a goofy-yet-loveable pet to the family.
@Twinbrick And shouldn’t it be Dora the Explora?
Dora made me think of an adventure i had with my daughter when she was in second grade. Long story short, we were at the Nickelodeon studios and met the guy who is the actual voice of Sponge Bob. If you want to know the rest of the story you’ll need to subscribe so you can read all about it when I do a post on that fun day.
@MrsFnBob Ugh! FU Briere you lil midget bitch!
That went straight into my book because I guarantee that I can use some variation of that tweet several times over. That is as concise and clear an expleitive as I have ever seen. Nicely done.
In case you were wondering, Daniel Briere is a hockey player with Philadelphia who was a former Buffalo Sabre. Mrs. FnBob loves the Sabres and hates the Flyers.
You know how they say that every guy has a little black book? My not-so-little black book is filled with story ideas. Mainly stuff I hear on TV or out in public that I find funny or anything else that I think may be worthy of using at some point in my writing. I like to keep the book with me as much as possible but when it’s elsewhere I use my phone to send myself a quick e-mail with the thought.
It sounds corny to say, but we can get inspiration from almost anything. The key is to really take a look and see if anything rocks your brain. Don’t be afraid to go a couple layers down and see what happens. If not, move on to something else. I make no guarantees on the quality of ideas and what you do with them is up to you.
What about you? What gets you going as a writer? Leave a comment and let me know.
Check out the video of Save Ferris doing Come On Eileen. This one always gets my creative juices going. FYI, note the name on the pickup in the middle of the video. It says “Dexy’s” and is driven by the lead singer from Dexy’s Midnight Runners–the originators of this song back in the 80’s.