Snarkling Clean

Snarkling Clean- because you don't have to cuss to make fun of stuff. Two dedicated readers discuss romance novels- from what made us weep with joy to what made us want to poke pencils through our eyeballs.

Friday, March 24, 2006

If Music Be The Food Of Love

I've noticed something. I can write while the TV is on. Doesn't bother me a bit. Comedy, drama, reality, news, doesn't matter. I just tune it out.

Unless Sam Elliott is on. I can tune out hunks (for the most part) but Sam? Those dark eyes and that gravelly voice? Bib territory.

I can also tune out chatter. My kids in a tiff, constant interruptions ("Robyn, where is my...insert any item that has been kept in the same place for the past ten years" and "Mom! My shirt's on fire!") don't phase me. I can still keep most of my mind in the present story I'm working on.

But the one thing I can't tune out, or use to my advantage, is music. I've read dozens of authors who talk about the soundtracks to their books. The type of music they love to write to spans the gamut, from country to rock to pop to rap to classical- you name it, they've listened. And written. Romantic music to get in the mood. Driving music to add urgency to an action scene. Story songs to add to characterization. Or simply a playlist of their faves to relax them so they can think.

I can't. I get so caught up in it I start singing. I do sing, actually, which may be the problem. I start performing. I start concentrating on key, pitch, variations, tone, etc. until the story I'm typing goes right out the window and I've closed my eyes and gone into Streisand mode.

Of which, I'm sure, Sam would approve.

What about you? Are there things that distract you so much you can't write?


Blogger OzzatLarge said...

MUsic is the true thing that allows me to speak and write freely and with emotion. It has inspired me to do many things that would otherwise give me the blahs. The one thing that does distract me is anytime my wife walks in the room. She can make me lose my train of thought, babble like an idiot and act like a complete knucklehead.

Ozz at Large

1:35 PM  
Anonymous Kaitlin said...

I have to have music playing when I'm writing. It's amazing how whatever I'm listening to has to work with what I'm writing though. I can't write love scenes with blistering rock and can't write scary scenes with stuff like Enigma playing.

What distracts me? Obnoxious noises like chainsaws, dogs barking, etc. Drives me batty!

2:52 PM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

Number one distraction: "Mommy! Potty! Now!"

Number two distraction: (crashing noise, baby wailing) "I didn't do it!"

You get the idea. :)

3:53 PM  
Blogger quirkychild said...

Hmmm...I know what you mean about music. I enjoy really listening to it so much that it's hard to concentrate when I writing...but I still play it anyway!

But the one thing that really rips me out of the zone? My little brothers chattering and running around and other annoying loudness.

Oddly enough though, if it's dead silent with no one in the house I can't concentrate either!

7:24 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

This is kidding my mother and I were talking about this exact same thing today.

I am exactly the same way. I can watch anything on television and write a research proposal (which I was doing today, BTW) a creative writing project, play review, etc. But once the radio is on I'm toast. Count me out 'cuz I can't concentrate on beans.

What is that all about?

7:39 PM  
Blogger Bernita said...

That "insert any item that's been kept in the same place for the last ten years" really, really rings a bell.
Invariably occurs JUST when you've found that elusive word you were searching for or had a glimmer that might resolve a plot bunny.
Music moves me to places other than those I write about.
I don't dare listen to it while writing.

3:46 AM  
Anonymous ZaZa said...

I'm with you on both those distractions. My first fiance looked a lot like Sam. Shame the personality didn't fit.

The only way I can write with music playing is if I make up a playlist and listen to it over and over until I can tune it out. It's nice to have something going, but I've got to be immunized to not be distracted.

5:55 PM  
Blogger LotionBarBunny said...

I agree that crashing noises and someone saying, "Uh oh" does not help me keep my focus. The phone constantly ringing doesn't help me either.

My biggest distraction though, is my email. I cannot get work done for more than 5 minutes without checking my email.

11:59 AM  
Blogger Missie said...

My husband being in the same room distracts me. Not in a good way either. I have a hard time working on my actual work, much less writing, if he is around. And my kids. Whew--what distractions they are. But I loooove having talk radio on while I work. I can somehow tune out and listen at the same time, and accomplish what I need to. Don't ask me to make that make sense.

I can't listen to music while working or writing. I too start singing or thinking about the group and how that lead singer should get his haircut or how upset I am with Rascal Flatts cuz they had to show JoeDon's booty in that one video or what a cute couple Tim and Faith make or what grade I was in when this song came out, ad nauseum infinity forever and ever amen.

2:01 PM  
Blogger LotionBarBunny said...

I read this post before heading to bed last night...and thank you so much that I dreamed about Sam Elliot. No seriously. (sticking finger down my throat). lol.

6:26 AM  

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