It is all very well to be able to write books, but can you wiggle your ears?
There are lots of pictures online of famous authors’ desks. They’re great fun. But for me, maybe because I work on the radio, I always wonder what they sound like. Did Dickens have a grandfather clock ticking away while he wrote? Did Tolkien scribble away to the sound of a crackling log fire?
For me, sound creates mood better than anything else. Writing late into the night when the rest of the world falls silent is one of my favorite things. I use music. I often listen to the same track every night before I start writing. It’s a Pavlovian call to my brain that I’m about to slip into writing mode. Hopefully my creativity begins to salivate as I settle into the familiar music.
When I was writing The Deadhorse Project I began most writing sessions listening to Tori Amos’s A Sort of Fairytale. Deadhorse is a town at the top of the Dalton Highway in Alaska and the book’s working title was Way Up North, a lyric from the song.
I spent a lot of time listening to the Charlatans when I was writing the first draft of Helter Skelter. And if I Fall gets a passing mention in the first chapter.
What do you listen to when you’re writing?