Music: The Soundtrack to My Creativity

Music has been a huge part of my creative process. It puts the fire in my creative spirit as cheesy as it sounds. Ever since I was a little girl curled up with Radio Disney in my bedroom, music has given me ideas through daydreams so vivid, my heart twists and turns with my characters. Every story has its own soundtrack. A song doesn’t have to be tangentially related to the story itself. It just has to feel right.

I can’t even begin to describe my musical tastes. It’s a bit all over the place so my process from inspiration to idea tends to be just as random. The music of Queen and Come on Eileen somehow ended up undergirding the emotional intensity I want to convey in the historical horror Grim Lore, especially in its early concept stages. Stranger still because it’s supposed to take place in 19th century America in the wilds of E. Texas. Boxer Shorts was inspired by a beautiful Mexican pop song, Limon y Sal, about accepting the differences of your significant other through fairy tale metaphor. Again, I’m not sure how I got there.

The Sometimes Excruciating Chore of Writing

I’ll admit it. I sometimes hate writing.

I go through frequent periods where nothing seems to go right. I hate the idea. I hate writing it. I hate editing it. I hate the finished product. Nothing seems to go right and I wonder why I’m even bothering.

I think we all go through a cycle of hate when trying to engage with any creative project. I can’t be alone in this right?

I’ll be honest and say that, at the moment, I’m going through an extended rough writing patch. Finishing an idea has been one of the biggest hurdles of the last few weeks. Starting just a smidge easier. (Meaning I’m just about struggling with the entire process, now doesn’t it?).

But if I took anything from 2017, I won’t always feel like writing. Every idea won’t be spun from gold as soon as I decide to dedicate actual words to it. I won’t have one of those moments always depicted on television where the ideas just flow–face aglow with that glorious a-ha as I furiously type. (Heck, that isn’t even me on a good writing day.)

tom hanks gifs
A more accurate representation of my “a-ha” moment

Much of what I wrote last year was me sitting down and forcing myself to get it done. And there were times where I violently loathed every single word that I etched on the page but I continued.

Even when I end up hating a line, a paragraph, a scene, a concept, I can engage in a more proactive hate when its given concrete form. I get a better sense of what I would rather do and can more actively engage with the idea I most fiercely despise.

When something’s an ephemeral concept, it’s harder to challenge it. Your brain is charged with a billion things any given second and it has an annoying tendency to take shortcuts with abstract concepts. You only come away with the idea that something must be a pretty good or pretty bad idea and without action, it’s hard to articulate why or for anyone else to articulate it either.

So write through the hate.