Music and…Dialogue?!

November 15, 2009 at 5:27 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

It’s strange how utterly lifted I feel when I hear a song that relates to my MC’s position perfectly. In fact, I feel the same when I hear a song that relates to my position.

Anyway, today’s blog is all about music related writing. Sure, some artists’  (in reality) have atrocious voices, but it’s the lyrics and aura of the song that I want to talk about.

Many people compile playlists for their books which is a very good way of channeling certain points and feelings in your book. I, personally, have never successfully completed a playlist, because my WIP has gone through as many changes as a game of chinese whispers, and my playlist has kinda dwindled in that time.

But anyway, I’m here to give my advice on finding the perfect song(s) for your book.


Many people have lyrics, many decide to choose songs without them at all. If you are going to choose lyrics, make sure they fit certain qualities, like pin-pointing the anger/happiness/problems felt by the character. Another thing that people often consider is what voice the words are sung by. For instance, I was annoyed when I found the lyrics and tone of ‘If Everyone Cared’ by Nickelback was perfect, but the voice of the main singer totally different. This may not bother you, but I am a complete perfec-shionn-ist.


What I think is the second most important point is the sort of tone being created by the melody and instruments. If the characters are in a club and you want to portray love, then a more Cascada-esque song may be in order. The same goes for if they are gazing up at the stars, but the music would be a lot gentler. Some people are not bothered by the tone relating to situation, but I think having a clubby song when romantically holding hands on the beach is a little…weird…

3. The VOICE

By this, I don’t only mean the voice of the person singing, but of the character relating to the song. I have a character named Kallen in my WIP, and he is muscular, mature but quite shy around the girl he likes (MC) and blushes insanely (I can kinda relate).  The song I picked for when he tells MC is ‘Just So You Know’ by Jesse McCartney. GO LISTEN! It’s the most awesome song and I can relate to it too. The voice of Jesse McCartney and his choice of words is absolutely PERFECT for Kallen, making that song my no.1 choice.

I hope I’ve helped with your playlists, or hopefully inspired you to start one. Remember, not everyone is as rigorous as I am, and sometimes you need to ease down on the details for a song, like forgetting the song is about a girl when it needs to be about a boy. But use songs to help channel emotions and events.

-Magic/Becky. xx


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  1. Even though I posted what music I was listen to before, somehow – during the deep of the night when weird things happen in my writing – I realized that the Johnny Cash recording of Hurt perfectly summed up the nihilistic tone of my MC. Not necessarily suicidal, but willing to step into the worst situation imaginable just to prove himself right. It’s a very strange story, so the wild mix of music fuels the insanity jus’ fine.

    It doesn’t help that I seem to be channelling a bunch of late eighties Brit authors like David Britton, the sixties-era Moorcock, and Philip Jose farmer of all people… For a story set in the US about an psycho robot. Go figure. If nothing else, music makes for a nice distraction.

  2. I almost always wind up with a song or two that becomes so connected to a book (sometimes for no logical reason whatsoever) that every time I hear it I get completely clobbered by my old characters. It’s rather inconvenient when I’m working on my WIP and one of the songs I’ve attached to my last novel comes on. Completely disrupts my train of thought. XD

    I’ve never managed to make a playlist that’s all that fitting, but I think I’m going to give it a try next time I find myself procrastinating!

    Great post, Becky!! :D

  3. Great post! :D
    I always think Riley, my MC, whenever I hear Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. There’s a case where the actual voice matches up, not to mention the lyrics and everything.

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