Transforming BPM to WPM

I listen to music while I write.  Lately, I find Pachelbel’s Canon especially helpful.  It’s a hugely popular piece, which is interesting considering that the Canon remained forgotten for hundreds of years and was only rediscovered in the 20th century.

As soon as I hit “play”, my mind immediately snaps back to whatever it is that I am working on.  The music allows me to remain where I need to be for however long it takes.

There is a scene in “Believe” that took me three days to write, which meant listening to the same song on repeat for three solid days.  That particular song was “Bard Dance” by Enya and at a whopping 1 minute and 23 seconds long, the “repeat” mode got a heck of a workout.

Enya (album)

Enya (album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You might be thinking “You must be so sick of that song!”, but the truth of the matter is that when I am writing I lose all concept of time.  I have to admit that it must seem like absolute torture to some.  Listening to the same song on repeat for three solid days, while frantically trying to keep up with all the characters that were coming forward and the stories they wanted to tell.  But when I read through that scene, I am always struck by how it came out exactly as I pictured it in my mind and how much I love the characters that were kind enough to join me on the journey.

In my humble opinion, when you look back on something you’ve written it should be with fondness.  All of the challenges and the frustration forgotten, you remember how much you loved researching it, how intriguing the characters were, the rush you had finally getting it all out of your head and down on paper (literally or figuratively).

I can’t speak for other authors, but I think it’s wonderful to have your own personal soundtrack for your work.  Even if you never share it with anyone else, choosing instead to keep it between you and the characters that the music helped bring to life.

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