Friday, October 22, 2010

Creative Cross-Fertilization Part 2

Following on my previous post on creative cross fertilization and specifically, the inspiration of music, here are some thoughts for writers: Try writing to music. See what it does for you. Try listening to a variety of music and see what best suits your story. Will your story change, or does your writing style change with different types of music? Is it different if you listen to classical as opposed to rock, or heavy metal, or folk, or blues, or blue grass? Here’s another thought: What is your character’s favourite music? Figuring it out offers a sideways glimpse into your character to flesh him/her out in a way that perhaps mere biographical details can’t. This might never show up in your writing, but you’ll know that detail about your character, and it’ll inform your writing. And what kind of music does your character hate? This too tells you something about her/him. Oh, and try this – if your character were a piece of music, which one would it be? When I started to ponder that, I decided that Dilly, in The Trouble With Dilly, would be Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, or perhaps Bach’s Third Brandenburg Concerto. Oh, both are my favourites! Red – a character with whom I’ve spent a great deal of time lately, as I’ve re-worked THAT BOY RED – might, I think, be Beethoven’s Pastoral. Or perhaps some East coast fiddle music. What music best represents your character?


  1. Music truly is inspiring but I had never thought of asking my character what music he likes. So I did, and I'm still waiting for the answer. I think that reflects how much I'm still discovering my character. Thanks for the insight. Great blog.

  2. Thanks, Deirdre. Glad this is helpful. I find that even as I suggest ideas here in this blog, it spurs me on to try new angles. I hope you discover your character's inner music. And outer musical faves. Mmm. D'you think maybe inner music doesn't necessarily match a character's tastes? As in the difference between personality and character? (Blog post coming in a month or so on the difference between personality and character.)