Lots of thunderstorms and heavy rain in last couple of days - we needed the rain!
I can't overstate how important music is to me when I'm writing, or planning, a book. Now, when I'm actually sitting at the laptop writing, I don't listen to music. I don't listen to anything, including, as Michael will tell you, him. Bu...t one of my favorite things to do when away from the computer, but still immersed in the story, is go for a drive and put my playlist into the CD player. Or, when I'm on a flight, I plug into my iPod, stare out the window, and clear my mind. I'm convinced the best ideas come in those moments. Music seems to open a channel, help make connections I wouldn't normally see. Music makes me a better writer than I actually am, and creates a better book than I could possibly write without it.
Each of the Gamache books has its own playlist, though some songs repeat from book to book.
When I was writing and thinking about THE BEAUTIFUL MYSTERY music became even more important, since the power of music is one of the themes, and indeed, one of the central mysteries. How music can inspire creativity, courage, can trigger memories, emotions. And music works on the brain - its remarkable resemblance to narcotics.
Well, music is definitely my drug of choice.
THE BEAUTIFUL MYSTERY is set in a remote and forgotten monastery in Quebec. A place of quite contemplation and plain chant, singing the words of God in the voice of God. And what happens when that harmony is shattered by murder.
Of course, while writing and considering the book, I listened to Gregorian Chants. The classic chants, but also some remarkable re-imagining of them. But I also listened to a lot of modern music.
If you have Spotify, click through the link (http://spoti.fi/PYOe5D). If not, have a look at the playlist here:
*Requiem for a Tower - performed by the London Symphony - written by Clint Mansell
*The Pretender - Foo Fighters
*Fallin' - Alicia Keys
*An American Trilogy - Elvis Presley
*Ali in the Jungle - The Hours
*À distance Andrée Watters
*Crime of the Century - Supertramp
*Iam Christus - Dom Minier & La Schola - Splendour (monks of St-Benoit-du-Lac, Quebec - an updating of traditional Gregorian Chants)
*An American Theme - Irish Film Orchestra - Long Journey Home
*Love the Way You Lie - Eminem
*Not Afraid - Eminem
*PAX - Gregorian Chants on the Theme of Peace - Monks of St-Benoit-du-Lac
*Chant - The Benedictine Monks of Santo Domingo de Silos
*Someone Like You – Adele
since Spotify is not available all over the world, the wonderful Lauren at Minotaur Books in the US (with St Martin's Press) has made a playlist on YouTube - you can try that. Here's that link...
What music transports you? I'd love to hear about your favorite pieces of music.