Episode 25 Blogcast--How Music Influences Our Stories

[00:00:00] Music:

Hillary: [00:00:15]Welcome to loose leaf, a multi author writing journal, where we talk goals, the ups and downs of writing and where we try to warn you off our greatest pitfalls. We'll keep it short because you don't have much time and we'd rather be writing. 

Charity: [00:00:26] Hi, Hillary. 

Kahle: [00:00:28] Hey, 

Hillary: [00:00:30] we're here. Yay. 

Kahle: [00:00:33] We're awake. 

Charity: [00:00:35] We're uh, recording before Thanksgiving.

So kind of that day before, take that deep breath and get ready for all the food. I 

Hillary: [00:00:45] am already in my Thanksgiving coma. I mean, I've been here since last Saturday when we had ours. Yeah. I've been floating through these few days as if it was already done in black Friday. 

Charity: [00:00:57] Right? Well, as black Friday has been going on. So I [00:01:00] know we've been doing all of our 

shopping. And we did Thanksgiving on Monday. So we're still eating leftovers. We're actually doing waffle bar for Thanksgiving tomorrow 

Hillary: [00:01:10] for fun, because tomorrow is actually Thanksgiving. I still have to make more pie. So I've got, I made two pumpkin pies. And I'm like, we don't need more buy.

Kahle: [00:01:21] That's not even a real thing, Hillary. 

Hillary: [00:01:26] I would agree with you, but we had nine pies, two cheesecakes, and one random dessert Thanksgiving, and we have worked through them all. 

Kahle: [00:01:35] You're getting closer.

Charity: [00:01:40] So, Kyle, I know you said you guys do something a little different for Thanksgiving. 

Kahle: [00:01:45] Yes. We've had Indian food for like the last seven Thanksgivings, I think. And my, my, uh, my family hasn't had Turkey in 11 years. So [00:02:00] I'm also down to do un traditional. 

Charity: [00:02:03] So Indian food. Do you have a favorite? 

Kahle: [00:02:06] tikka masala is what we almost always make because it's everybody's favorite.

So 

Hillary: [00:02:12] that's very good. Do you make naan bread? 

Kahle: [00:02:14] Uh, I think we buy it lame.

It's so good. Well, 

Charity: [00:02:25] Hey, so I thought today we could talk about music and how it might inspire our writing. 

Kahle: [00:02:32] Yeah, no, I think this is an extremely interesting topic. Um, so I had an idea of an angle to take this from. That I want to start with, cause I know it's not where we're going to go for the podcast. Um, but what music, what role does music play in your stories was, was my angle that I wanted to take it.

Like what things are going on. Whenever [00:03:00] music is, is an emphasis in, in my story about beer S and all the dwarves music plays a role in. The way that they interact with the world. And it's interesting. There's a, there are certain rhythms that if they're all played, they can like unlock the magic for people.

So 

I'm getting a Zelda vibe. 

Charity: [00:03:29] Kahle: Definitely my favorite video game of all time. Yes. 

Our family loves Zelda, and music plays a huge part in that game. 

Kahle: [00:03:41] Have you ever heard of the name Rouge 

Hillary: [00:03:43] main Rouge? 

Kahle: [00:03:45] Name? It's. Okay, so it's French for red dwarf. And it's some thing in French folklore, the dwarves were the S the store that was red was extra, super bad. [00:04:00] So I've, I've taken that concept. 

Hillary: [00:04:02] Not good or super bad, like, cool. 

Kahle: [00:04:05] Like not good, like very, okay. 

Charity: [00:04:07] And the funny thing is my mind went to red dwarf, the British Scifi comedy. Yes. 

Kahle: [00:04:14] Which is so funny. Oh my gosh. I haven't watched that in like, I was entirely too young when I watched that it was on, it was on Nick at night at like 1130 or something.

All right. I've got to be wrong. 

Charity: [00:04:33] I think I caught it on PBS. 

Kahle: [00:04:35] So yeah. Yes, yes. It was on PBS, but it was late. Yeah. 

Charity: [00:04:40] You'll have to look it up. Hillary. It's British comedy, which I love, but you know, it's not for everybody. 

Kahle: [00:04:48] Well, okay. Anyway, the name Rouge I read to ARF. The idea is that rhythms played that the, the dwarves can tap into like.

Chaotic earth energy. And they [00:05:00] actually like burst into fire and like, can, it just makes them more terrifying. And, but if they keep playing it too long, they will actually burn up and die. And that's a secret that nobody knows. So anyway, 

Charity: [00:05:21] it's interesting. You brought that up because I was just thinking I have.

Several times in my stories where there's music going on, but I don't talk about it. Like people are dancing or what was the one? I just, there was something else I just did. And there was music involved and I didn't talk about the music at all. So I missed an opportunity. Well, 

Kahle: [00:05:44] it's difficult to talk about music.

That's one thing that I've, that I found the few times that I've heard it, like, like in the Cassandra Clare books that I just read, one of the, one of the characters played violin [00:06:00] and

as a musician, it was extremely cringy to listen to the way she described the violin playing. I was like, No. That's what that told me. Nothing that told me nothing. Sounded really good. And you said that 17 times, but, um, so it can be, it can be difficult. That's all. I that's all I meant to say. 

Hillary: [00:06:30] No, I thought that was an interesting, uh, direction that you wanted to go because I actually have I've in my forgetting you, I she's a.

She's an opera singer. So, um, she, we actually do use music in that book. Um, we as in me and the characters, um, but it's interesting because there's music, uh, they go to a dance club at one point or the music is loud and something, and it kind of influences that whole [00:07:00] interaction, but in the, her big grand, um, Makeup scene where she's like trying her grand gesture.

She writes him a song. Um, and she performs it. It's at a funeral it's to remember someone who's passed away, but really the lyrics are all tied to her love interest. So. I've definitely used it as tool in my stories. I love music though. Music. I felt a little awkward doing it just because I do love music so much.

And so I worried that it wouldn't come across to people who don't feel it the way I do, because especially because I had to kind of write lyrics. And so, um, You can't tell them what it's supposed to sound like. I always find that really interesting in a book where they'll write out lyrics that, of course you don't know they're their own song and [00:08:00] being musical.

I try to put music to it, 

Kahle: [00:08:03] no matter 

Hillary: [00:08:04] what, I always am trying to put music to whatever lyrics I find. So I'm like, I wonder what this is going to sound like when everybody else reads it. I have no idea, but I do like using it. I thought it was, um, I thought it was a good, uh, tie in to her and what's important to her and bringing that to try and connect the, connect them again at the end.

So it felt right. 

Charity: [00:08:32] Yeah. Cause it's a part of her 

Hillary: [00:08:32] personality.

I dunno. I think it's interesting coming from different genres, seeing how, um, We both would still use music in our stories, you know, but it, it influences the story completely differently. Yeah. And charity, you're writing a whole series based on music and songs and stuff. 

Charity: [00:08:53] Yes that's because I hear a song and I, you know, a really good song to me tells a [00:09:00] story.

There's a lot of music, that's just the same words over and over, and that's kind of sad. 

Hillary: [00:09:07] You like, they missed an opportunity. 

Charity: [00:09:09] They did, they really did good song, tells a story. And then a lot of times my mind, you know, with the science fiction background, which is all about asking questions and looking for the answers, I'm always like, okay, well, what happened before this moment?

What happened after this moment? That that makes up the song. And so I created a whole playlist and I'm going to do an anthology using all of these. I call it my country, heartbreak and romance. Playlist or something like that. And, uh, I've kind of excited about it, but it's, it's always been that way. For instance, um, one of the major scenes for the magic wakes trilogy, it's the song, dear agony by breaking Benjamin.

And I will be driving down the road. It'll come on and I'll just burst into tears. Cause it's this moment that I don't want to. Right. 

Hillary: [00:09:56] That's amazing. 

Kahle: [00:09:57] That's cool. 

Hillary: [00:09:58] No, actually I, [00:10:00] um, I never used music like that. Like I, I love music. I love the songs. I love the stories in them. Yeah. But it's more about the, the melodies to me.

I very rarely know lyrics to music because I just don't hear it. Uh, I don't hear it. People like, even since I was little, I don't remember him. I don't, it's hard for me to sing along. I'm always off in the wrong words. I make up my own words by the end of it, because I just don't know what they are. So it's all about the melody for me, but it's been really interesting since charity was sharing some of those with me.

I have been. Listening to my music differently as if it were stories. And it's been really fun because I have found star songs that connect to stories I've already written and connect stories that I had planned. And I've messaged Carrie and Tamra several times. And I was listening to Taylor Swift and I just started crying, just dumb.

[00:11:00] Because the story that it tells him like this, so connects to what I've been writing and now I know how they feel and it's just, it gives me a whole different viewpoint on, um, on the characters. It helps, it helps me dive deeper into who they are. I feel like, 

Charity: [00:11:18] I think it's easier to fill the emotion with the song.

Hillary: [00:11:21] Yeah, it is. Music is special that way. 

Kahle: [00:11:24] So in that same vein, Um, I was I've as I write for the classical music radio stuff, I got to write, I had to edit four or five episodes and write two new ones this last week. And. So what you said about the music giving you insight. I think what you were talking about is that it gives you insight into the emotion of like the characters that you're writing and the people, the people that are singing it.

Is that what you were saying? Or 

Hillary: [00:11:55] I suppose it does go both ways. Yeah. Um, I'm using it mostly for my [00:12:00] characters, but, uh, yeah, it does. It gives you insight on both sides. Or at least what they're trying to portray. 

Charity: [00:12:08] Well, I guess I thought of this topic because I noticed that NaNoWriMo has added a feature where when you create your project, you can add a link to your playlist for your 

Hillary: [00:12:20] novel, uh, 

Charity: [00:12:21] which I did not do, but, uh, I thought that was a cool feature.

And that's kinda what got me thinking about. But music and writing. And, uh, and I know, like I could listen to classical music softly in the background when writing, but I can't listen to things with lyrics when I'm writing, that's all beforehand to kind of get me in the mood, but. 

Hillary: [00:12:43] Generally. I like it. I agree.

That's actually very much the way I do as well. Um, I have certain songs that kind of get me in the mode of writing romance or editing or whatever it is, uh, kind of power songs pump you up. But then while I'm writing, I. I have a classical station that [00:13:00] I turn on and it just cycles through some nice music for those of you can give me the

Kahle: [00:13:06] thumbs up. That's a big,

Charity: [00:13:11] well, I know, uh, we wanted to kind of keep it short tonight, so I kind of put this thing together and it'll be interesting to see what you guys think. Cause what, sometimes when I hear songs. It relates to me. And I don't know if you guys have had that happen where you hear a song. You're like, Oh my gosh, that's totally how I feel right now.

And I put together several that have to do with, I think, inside my writer's mind and how I feel about it sometimes. So without further ado, let's listen to this mashup of songs.

Author Mashup Song

Music: [00:13:43] I sit alone and watch the clock, 

trying to collect my thoughts. I've got a lot that's on my mind. [00:14:00] Open up the book you beat me with again. Read it off one sentence at a time. Little things make me want to cry sometime. But that's just life, it'll be alright. 

It's not a time to break down, well it's not a time to break down. And I'm just holding on [00:15:00] until it's over. Mayday!

I know you feeling like you just can't win but you're trying. It's hard to keep on keeping on when you're being pushed around. Don't even know which way is up, you just keep on spinning around, round, down. 

I wonder how, how did we end up here? But you hold on tight, hoping you might find, every page you've turned is a lesson learned. Ain't we all, aint' we all, just trying [00:16:00] to get it right. These are the chapters of my life. 

I'm bleeding out, if the last thing that I do is bring you down, I'll bleed out for you. So I bear my skin and I count my sins and I close my eyes and I take it in. I'm bleeding out, I'm bleeding out for you. 

Losing friends and, I'm chasing sleep. Everybody's worried 'bout me. In too deep, say I'm in too deep. But I will fight until the end.

I get up. I get down and I'm jumping around. and the rumpus and ruckus are comfortable now. Does this story have an ending? Because I just can't do it today. I can't do it today. 

Mayday, I wonder how, how did we end up here?  I got a feeling, it's gonna be a good day. And my problems can wait til [00:17:00] tomorrow because I feel good today. Can't nobody bring me down, down, down, down, Can't nobody bring me down, Can't nobody bring me ... And I don't really care if nobody else believes, 'cause I've still got a lot of fight left in me. 

Pretend you know this song everybody, come hang. Let's go out with a bang. Bang, bang, bang. Here we go. So put your best face on everybody, pretend you know this song everybody, come hang. Let's go out with a bang. I'm way to young to lie here forever. [00:18:00] I'm way to old to try some whatever, come hang, let's go out with a bang. 

Charity: [00:18:10] well there, you have it. What did you think? Uh, we had a bit of a glitch when we were recording and kale and Hillary were not able to hear anything as you'll see right now. I just wanted you to be able to hear it because I would have to see if you guys could connect to any of those. 

Hillary: [00:18:29] I wanted to try and ask some questions, but I couldn't hear very well enough.

I have terrible hearing anyway. And so I was just like, There were only a few songs that I really could hear well enough to understand. The words I did wonder is the part where you're bleeding and losing all your friends. Is that about your character's? Like you're bleeding your heart out of the characters or is that like they're killing, you know, and nobody wants to be around me anymore.

Charity: [00:18:57] Go into the story that everything else, [00:19:00] you know, you're losing sleep because you're so into the story, you have to keep writing or you're just worried about it all the time. Like. I don't sleep a lot because my stories are cycling through my brain. And I often kind of ignore my friends because I'm talking to the people inside my head and then the bleeding out is the times that I must sit down and write this, but I don't want to.

And it feels like it's just. Drawing blood from me. Just try to get it on the cage. And I like the weather. It says, you know, does the story have an ending? 

Hillary: [00:19:32] That's one of my favorite parts. 

Kahle: [00:19:35] That's awesome. 

Charity: [00:19:36] Yeah. So I'll send it to you guys, so you could 

Hillary: [00:19:38] actually hear it and I'll, 

Charity: [00:19:40] I'll put it in the podcast a little bit better, but it makes it hard for you to comment on it.

If you can't hear it. 

Kahle: [00:19:45] Right. 

Hillary: [00:19:46] I know. I'm sorry. Sounds like it's a lot of fun though. It sounds like you had some fun putting it together. 

Kahle: [00:19:53] Oh, yeah, that reminds me, that reminded me listening, listening to it. When I, I I'll find some [00:20:00] songs that inspire me to write a short story and then develop something from that.

And it reminded me of a challenge that I did with my brother-in-law last year, where we would send each other a song and then you'd listen to it and then play it again. And you had. To write a story within the playtime of the song. Oh wow. And like that's 

Hillary: [00:20:29] super quick. 

Kahle: [00:20:31] It was just a short story challenge.

And so we were sending back classical pieces. So some of them were like 10 minutes long, but, but still that's really fun. 

Charity: [00:20:43] And that's a good challenge to shut off the editor and just write, write, write, write, cause you don't have time to overthink it. 

Kahle: [00:20:51] And it's so you, you listened to it one time through to get inspiration and then you hit [00:21:00] play and you write, and when the song is over, you're done.

Would you guys be down for that challenge? 

Charity: [00:21:06] Oh boy, maybe the first week of December. Could, should we try that? We can try it. 

Hillary: [00:21:12] Yeah, sure. That'd be fun then we can all come and read them 

Charity: [00:21:16] really bad, but it'll that that'd be awesome. I was going to say, do you guys want to talk goals for the next week real quick?

Hillary: [00:21:24] Sure. Um, I actually do have some writing goals. I still am trying to see. I would. I still have a goal of being able to do my re uh, 50,000 words in November. I have added some that I haven't logged because they're on a different story and I'm not sure how I should handle that if I should just keep adding them and just say it's on there.

Or if, and then not actually have this story that's listed finished, even though it looks like it is. 

Does that make sense? 

Charity: [00:21:51] Yeah. Cause it's just for you. I say Adam, cause you wrote those words this month. 

Hillary: [00:21:57] Yeah. So I [00:22:00] may go and update that and get the words in. But, uh, I want my goals. I have to have my cozy mystery, at least the first chapter of it done and heavily outlined.

I feel like I've written that story three times already. And this plot line changes every time because I'm so terrible at mysteries. Oh, don't all me. I don't like 

Charity: [00:22:22] that. I was going to say, I thought your other one was really cute. 

Hillary: [00:22:26] That's a thank you. Thank you. That's what I need 

Charity: [00:22:30] so that you can do it 

Hillary: [00:22:36] in the middle of it.

It feels like it's all mud and there's no way to even clean it up. There's nothing there it's it, but it's going to work. So I just have to, um, write it enough times more that eventually it's clean enough. I can send them an outline. So. I need to get an outline and the first chapter done on that, and then I need to finish my, [00:23:00] um, my other projects.

I mean, I've got two other projects on the table that need to be done. They probably won't get done in November, but my goal is to finish the cozy and then work on at least one of those other 

Kahle: [00:23:11] projects. That's awesome. Awesome. 

Charity: [00:23:15] And as long as you're moving forward, it's all 

Hillary: [00:23:16] good. Get the words down. 

Charity: [00:23:20] My goal is to start writing again.

I took, I did do a little bit this morning, but I took Monday and Tuesday off today's Wednesday when we were recording. And, uh, so my goal is to get back into the swing of it. Cause I'm four chapters away from finishing the draft of my current project. I'm like, just, it's so exciting, but I keep going back and adding words.

Somewhere else. And I'm like, just get to the end and then go back. But 

Kahle: [00:23:49] it's hard 

Charity: [00:23:51] because the end is so crucial and I'm like, 

Hillary: [00:23:55] almost always we'll get like right up to the end and be like, Oh, okay. Actually [00:24:00] need to go fix these things. And then I go and it's like, every time I draft, I get a little closer to the end because I just it's like, I don't.

I, I like I could ride an end, but it's going to be wrong. So I just need to go back and fix these couple of things and feel it a little better. And then 

Kahle: [00:24:14] eventually it's the tide, the tide 

Charity: [00:24:19] coming in and out. You're closer. 

Hillary: [00:24:22] My writing tide. 

Kahle: [00:24:23] Yeah, that is cool. Well, my, my writing goal is just finishing this chapter, but goal went from like, Eight stories down to like the steps to the first story.

And I'm like, yeah, yeah, 

Hillary: [00:24:43] absolutely. There's still goals. Holy cow. They didn't go away. They're still there. 

Charity: [00:24:49] Yeah. It's just, just adjusting. Yeah. Adjusting and finding where your comfort level is and what will fit with your current life. 

Kahle: [00:24:58] Right. [00:25:00] Well, 

Charity: [00:25:00] anything anybody wants to add or 

Kahle: [00:25:03] happy Thanksgiving guys, 

Hillary: [00:25:04] happy Thanksgiving.

Charity: [00:25:06] Yes. Happy 

Hillary: [00:25:08] almost the end of NaNoWriMo.

Kahle: [00:25:15] I don't have to feel bad about myself anymore. 

Hillary: [00:25:19] You don't have to right now either, but I get 

Kahle: [00:25:21] it.

Hillary: [00:25:24] That's the, all the other people out there feel that same 

Kahle: [00:25:27] thing. Yep. There is an end. Everyone 

Charity: [00:25:33] it's coming, it's coming. And then we get to enjoy the holidays. Then 

Hillary: [00:25:37] we can flip off the guilt 

Charity: [00:25:40] and we can spend 10 months going. I'm never doing nano again, 

Kahle: [00:25:44] but then 

Hillary: [00:25:47] the real nano chalk. 

Kahle: [00:25:49] Yeah. Oh, I apologize to all of the.

Dedicated people who run NaNoWriMo. We love your program. You guys do [00:26:00] amazing work. You're inspiring millions. 

Hillary: [00:26:02] Well, and the cool thing is though every month we do it again. Every time every year we do try it and we spend months going, Oh my gosh, that was so hard. I know some people do. Use it and win it and all that kind of stuff.

And it's great. But a lot of us spend a lot of time trying and going, Oh my gosh, I never particularly that again. We come back to it and go. This is happening and we're excited. And we wanted to, in fact, I was thinking it'd be fun to go back and like, montage are our comments. That's about it from the beginning.

Yes. 

Kahle: [00:26:39] That would be excellent. So 

Hillary: [00:26:41] yes, they are doing great things and I love that it happens every year because every year I get another chance to step up to the plate and swing. Yeah. 

Charity: [00:26:50] All right. Well, hopefully that has encouraged everybody to.

[00:27:00] Well, that was quite a mess. Trying to get that song in there. It's really unfortunate kale and Hillary couldn't hear it and comment, but I would love to hear your comments. Email me@charitydotbradfordatgmail.com. Also, this will be our last blooper and bonus reel. After our podcast, we are working on getting a Patrion set up where all of that stuff will live.

We're really excited about the fun stuff that you're going to find over there. So stay tuned for more information. And now here's the last few bonus sections of this podcast. Survive Thanksgiving. 

Hillary: [00:27:53] Yeah, 

Kahle: [00:27:55] yeah. Survive black Friday morning. Cause I'm actually going out for the second [00:28:00] time in my life. Ooh, 

Charity: [00:28:04] maybe it won't be too big though.

Kahle: [00:28:07] Cabela's for pants. You know, nothing fun. I just want cheap pants.

And then vintage stock is having a, buy two, get one free on all of their sale items and straight up. I just like, I like browsing there anyway. So if there's anything good. They've like slashed everything and made it a buy two, get one free. 

Hillary: [00:28:31] Are these going to be writing goals or should we just share our black Friday goals?

Because I like this plan. Yeah, the cohort, 

Charity: [00:28:37] maybe let's wait until next time to set writing 

Kahle: [00:28:40] goals, goals 

Hillary: [00:28:43] for black Friday, Hillary. I don't actually, I have one and I'm, it's not working. I'm trying to get a Nintendo switch, but it's like every time you can't load the page, fast enough to buy those things.

It's so dumb. So whatever, not, not sure that's actually going to happen, [00:29:00] but so not, not exactly a goal 

Kahle: [00:29:04] from the, uh, from the perspective of writing about the composers of this music. It is really cool too. See their musical development throughout their career, like throughout their life. And, you know, they're, the people I'm writing about are mostly passed away.

So their biographies written about them and there's all these things that talk about what happened in their life. And you can start matching up what's going on in their life with the music that they were writing at the time. And you can see the emotions that are coming through. Or the, the desires for different emotions that are coming through.

Um, I might've talked about Brahms before, but I'll talk about it really, really shortly Yohanis Brahms spent [00:30:00] 20 years writing his first symphony and he, he wrote multiple, nearly complete versions of the song. Uh, of the symphony and then burned them because they weren't good enough. He was a very dramatic person, but, um, you know, 

Charity: [00:30:23] stream perfectionist, 

Kahle: [00:30:25] he was essentially Beethoven, like to the, to what would become Germany.

He was like, Beethoven's brother. He was like his son essentially in the line. So there was a lot of pressure, but, um, The symphony premiers. It's a huge hit within a year. He's already written his second symphony and the extremely loud, huge boisterous second SIM first symphony. Then we have what's called his pastoral [00:31:00] symphony and it is elegant and beautiful.

And. Then he wrote two more after that. But my favorite is his second because it's in the wake of all of that stress. And then he's like, he's on vacation and he's like, it's time. It's time to write another one. And it was so good. So 

Hillary: [00:31:25] more music me. 

Kahle: [00:31:27] Yeah. 

Hillary: [00:31:29] That's cool. I love that with all the research that you put into this, you're, you're getting to tell their stories completely differently and it's really cool.

Kahle: [00:31:38] Yeah. It's really fun. They're such interesting people and they're so normal. They just had insane talents that they developed and. We still appreciate it nearing 200 years later, for some, for, for a lot of them and 300 and [00:32:00] 400 years later, like, which is amazing. It's awesome. 

Charity Bradford. 

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© 2019 by Charity Bradford.