What is the Beat of YOUR Creation?

After delving into lighthearted topics like Life After Death, I thought it might be time to hit a heavier subject today. Let’s discuss music.

Do you like music? Do you listen to music when you write? How about if you do other creative things; like painting, sewing, singing, dancing, acting, etc? I feel like creation comes in so many forms and even tried to capture that idea with poetry. I, myself, delve into other arts besides writing. I sing, play, paper-craft, paint, draw, and do not dance.

And I need music.

A friend of mine told me she doesn’t listen to music much because it affects her. That is precisely why I listen. Yes, with the mental and emotional issues I deal with, I am affected as well. I am moved to tears, anger, fear, resolve, sadness, or elation. Not only that, but I am moved beyond the slip of a shadow those two-dimensional words convey in print.

Take this angry piece I’ve listened to today:

I have played it fifty times because, when music influences me, I have to hear it over and over and over …till whatever feeling it ignited within is appeased and I can move on.

That’s not to say I’m a grunge rock groupie. Before Blackbriar, I swam the soporific currents of Chopin. This piece, in particular, was on repeat for a few days:

I haven’t talked to my husband much about my Chopin infatuation because he’s already a little sensitive about how much into The Awakening I was in high school. Chopin has brought me to new heights, however, even 169 years after his death.

In my defense, I am not the only author who has attributed inspiration to music, nor even to specific tracks. Stephenie Meyer, who wrote some sort of romance book you may have heard of, even lists the songs she “hear(s) in (her) head while reading the book.”

I’ve written two or three blog posts with a certain song playing. One of my favorites, Let’s Stay in Bed Today I wrote while listening to “Defcon 5,” by Book on Tape Worm:

And, another of Blackbriar’s songs, “Preserved Roses,” plus Faith Marie’s “Antidote” were responsible for depressive works like It’s All in Your Head, Are You In There?, and It’s All a Lie.

I hate to end on a downer, so you’ll be happy to know that Wilhelmina Winters is often fueled by The Piano Guys:

So, is music your muse? What are some of your favorite jams?


Here’s what transpired this past week:
Wednesday, December 5: Should I Stay or Should I Go?, just my pondering on what comes after death.
Thursday, December 6: Skinwalkers, XLIV
Friday, December 7: Winner of The Fourth Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest announced. Congratulations, Michael B. Fishman.
I also re-blogged Susanna Leonard Hill’s children’s story contest. She does another around Valentine’s Day, so try again then.
Saturday, December 8: Beginning of The Fifth Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest (Enter it!).
Also, The Little Shepherd’s LullabyI wrote part of this as new lyrics to a song the children our local church ward (parish) are singing. I added, tweaked, re-worked, and submitted it to the contest with a minute to spare.
Sunday, December 9: Livelihood, a flash fiction entry for Carrot Ranch Literary Community. I put on my angry music, thought of the theme, and pictured paint gushing like blood onto a brick wall.
Monday, December 10: Inspirational Quote by e. e. cummings.
Tuesday, December 11: Wilhelmina Winters, Seventy-Five,
and The Bedtime Routine over at my motherhood site. My second son’s picture is in that article, though I generally prefer to use stock photos.
Wednesday, December 12: This post.

27 thoughts on “What is the Beat of YOUR Creation?

  1. mymindlessdrivel December 12, 2018 / 6:16 pm

    While I enjoy music, I can’t much listen to it when writing (especially if there are lyrics; occasionally music-only for background). Lyrics distract me from the words I’m trying to bring forth so it’s an absolute no-no. I also can’t claim much creativity outside of writing (creative organizing?) and I can’t recall a song inspiring a story. I have been inspired by a picture to write something, though. I know today it is common for writers to share their “playlist” for a story they wrote, but I definitely don’t have any such thing.

    Whatever works, eh?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Chelsea Owens December 12, 2018 / 6:44 pm

      I can relate to that as well. I use the music to drown out distractions, but sometimes find music itself a distraction.

      If I could get noise-cancelling headphones and Mary Poppins, I’d be set.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. bereavedandbeingasingleparent December 12, 2018 / 6:40 pm

    I would be lost without music. I think it frees my mind up. Either allows the mind to concentrate or it can allow it to dream. My core is rock music but I love a bit of Sinatra and classical music soothes me. It’s a right music mess. Today within 20 minutes switched from Samuel Barber to Pink Floyd to the Who.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chelsea Owens December 12, 2018 / 6:46 pm

      I am the same! I’m cheap so listen to YouTube, and find its automatic playlist it made for me as varied as what you’ve described.
      -Too bad it can’t know that one day is more of a Queen day than the suggested Pink Floyd. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. LA December 12, 2018 / 6:58 pm

    I’ve been listening to piano guys. Just beautiful

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lesleykluchin December 12, 2018 / 7:42 pm

    Ah music. Music is indeed inspirational. A world without music is like living in a black and white desert. I love all kinds of music. I combined both music and movement/dance in my classroom. I always had music playing. I had my students up and moving several times a day. Jazz creates a certain kind of movement and feeing. Beethoven’s Ode to Joy another…. I love listening and moving to music but when I write I turn the music off. Because then the music I hear is strictly in my head. And I will get distracted if the music in my head is going at a different pace then what is playing out loud. I did musical exercises in class with various melodies and then had students write and think about how they felt. I used to write poetry when I was younger and turn it into music that I played on my guitar.

    I think ALL the creative arts are tied together. The most fun production that I was ever involved in was a musical version of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. The music dept. played instruments, the theatre dept. acted and the dancers created original dances for each tale. The art dept. designed the sets. It was a festival of all the arts. Just wonderful. Now when I work with spoken word poets they have an artist drawing to the kids’ poems. A true artist infuses all the artistic disciplines and blends them together. THAT is what artists do. They get inspiration in the music around them. Sometimes it is an actual song. Sometimes it is the rhythm of the wind. Or the beat of footsteps. It’s all music.

    When I listen to music I see images. And I conjure up stories. In fact, as strange as this sounds, I went and set up my forever home. Which means I planned and I am making payments for my funeral (It is literally like buying a car, you make payments for a few years.) so my children won’t have to when my time comes. I found a spot in a Jewish Cemetery near a Gazebo by a lake and I wrote that after the rabbi says prayers I want them to click on iTunes and play the song Dancing In The Moonlight… Because I want them to think of me always dancing in the hereafter…. Yep, I’ve got the music in me…. and obviously so do you.


    • Chelsea Owens December 12, 2018 / 10:01 pm

      Thank you, Lesley! I’m so glad you agree!

      I love all your stories about teaching and think you sound like the best teacher ever.

      I didn’t know all that about funeral preparation, but it makes sense. The funerals I attend as part of our faith always incorporate music; I couldn’t imagine them otherwise. I may want to pick one of my more peaceful favorites for my own funeral. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Lesleykluchin December 12, 2018 / 11:43 pm

    The average funeral for land (Your plot etc.) and the service cost is around 18 thousand dollars. I wanted a Jewish cemetery and there are certain standards that must be followed. Jews do not embalm as we bury our dead with a day or two. The concept is that the soul is confused at first and therefore the body must be treated with reverence, respect and with care. No autopsy or embalming. That way the soul has time to adjust and move on without trauma. There is not usually music other than the mourners Kaddish which is done in Temple but not at the grave site. I have chosen to have everything done at the grave site since my family is small. When My ex husband passed away my son had to plan everything and it was overwhelming for him. I don’t want my children dealing with all that for me. Everything is set, will be paid for and they can mourn and celebrate my life. I turn 70 next year and decided instead of payments on a new car I would do this instead and save my kids the hassle. Easy Peasy.

    Liked by 2 people

      • Lesleykluchin December 13, 2018 / 6:38 am

        Nope just what any good parent would do. My parents did it too. It made it easy for my siblings and I. We were sad enough with grief and not having to pick out a coffin and worry about particulars was a blessing. My sister and brother and I wanted to be as kind to our children. It’s a necessary thing to do when parents hit their 60’s and 70’s. Then when the time comes it’s all set.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Bladud Fleas December 13, 2018 / 8:23 am

    I wrote my very first blog around music but now I listen to the voice in my head telling me what to write. 🤪

    Liked by 2 people

  7. lensdailydiary December 13, 2018 / 10:46 am

    I prefer silence when I blog. My playlist consists of songs by Mario Lanza, Josef Locke, Alfie Boe, Andrea Bocelli, Frank Patterson, Paul Robeson, Leonard Cohen etc. etc. etc. I love music.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chelsea Owens December 13, 2018 / 11:31 pm

      I often prefer silence. Ideally, I listen to help set the mood or to motivate some writing. I love your playlist song suggestions. 🙂


  8. Charli Mills December 13, 2018 / 10:54 am

    Music is like blood to me. My go-to for writing is instrumental because lyrics can interfere with dialogue. Yani, Enya, and other new age artists are among my favorites. I have the Last of the Mohicans “The Kiss” on a youtube mix that replays the song for something like three hours! When I found it, I realized there were others like me who will repeat a song like that. You said you’ll play a song until whatever it has ignited is appeased. Sometimes, certain emotional vibes are not appeased! During my work day I love to livestream WUMB, a radio station out of Boston. I have an ipod with itunes, I pay for GooglePlay, I set up soundtracks for different writing projects or characters, and I never travel without music. I’m so glad you wrote this — I’m now listening to Chopin and letting Blackbriar feed my rebelliousness.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Michael B. Fishman December 20, 2018 / 7:31 am

    At the risk of sounding dramatic, I’d say that music defines me. There’s rarely a time during my day – except for when I’m sleeping or listening to the news – that I’m not listening to music. One of the greatest joys for me is when someone exposes me to new music or a new artist and I love being able to do that for others which is why I try an include a song with all my blog posts. I’m not much of a fan of rap, and opera is pretty iffy for me, but anything else is fair game. I do listen to music when I write and what I’m trying to write will determine what I’m going to listen to. For whatever reason, song lyrics don’t interfere with my writing. Maybe they slow me down, I don’t know, so I’ll have to pay attention to that. Now that I think of it though, sometimes Classical music interferes with my writing because I get lost in the beauty (or the power) and just sit back and listen. I think I’m rambling now so I’ll stop before I start listing a bunch of stuff I like to listen to! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chelsea Owens December 20, 2018 / 7:48 am

      I completely relate to what you’ve described here, including the opera and rap. My favorite (only?) rap piece is “Lose Yourself;” for opera it’s “Barcarolle” by Offenbach -the scene that plays in the film “Life is Beautiful.”

      I love your description of the music not intefering, except that you get caught up and need to sit back to have it wash over you.


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