Monthly Archives: April 2011

In honor of Record Store Day

As with my first post, this one is going to be focused on music.  You’re going to find that a lot on this blog, because it’s about me and my identity – along with writer and various other things – is music nerd to a degree that embarrasses her friends.  As discussed in the first post, I can’t separate the two in my head.  They’re kind of the mischievous twins who rule my life.

Today, as some of you may know, is Record Store Day.  This is an international event aimed at celebrating independent record stores and reminding people what awesome resources they are.  Many bands are offering exclusive, special RSD releases, so check out and find your nearest participating store.  Me, I’ll be heading down to mine soon in the hopes of snagging the new Panda Bear (otherwise known as Noah Lennox) on vinyl, crossing my fingers that it’s as amazingly good as his last, Person Pitch.

On that note, I’m going to share one of the “mood music” playlists I put on when I’m trying to evoke a specific mood or tone from a scene.  I have many of them, and as long as it doesn’t make readers throw whatever the web equivalent of rotten tomatoes is at my blog, I’ll share them with some degree of regularity. 

And because I’m excited about the new Panda Bear, I’m sharing one he makes a few appearances on – as a solo artist, a guest vocalist, and with his main group, the incredible Animal Collective.

This is a playlist for characters sitting on a beach on a summer night, swinging on the swings in the park at 3 am, floating in dreams, or not hurrying that walk in the rain – at least, that’s what it does for me.  Your mileage may vary, but hopefully the trip will go somewhere fun.

  • Atlas Sound – Walkabout (ft. Noah Lennox)
  • Animal Collective – What Would I Want? Sky
  • Neon Indian – Psychic Chasms
  • Delorean – Simple Graces
  • Caribou – Odessa
  • Beach House – Take Care
  • Cut Copy – Hearts on Fire
  • Panda Bear – Take Pills
  • Avey Tare – Lucky 1
  • The Faint – Fish in a Womb
  • Phantogram – Running from the Cops
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    Posted by on April 16, 2011 in Uncategorized


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    On thinking on command

    Me: Okay, brain, it’s time to dig in now.  You really are a writer, and you have an exciting new opportunity.  You need an idea for a story.

    Brain: Pffft! I am ze arteest!  I do not look for ze inspiration, ze inspiration, it finds me!

    Me: Well, yes, that’s true most of the time, but being a published author can’t only work like that, and we want to be one of those one day.  First, you master finding ideas.  When you start writing the story, you can let the ideas master you and take you in unexpected directions.

    Brain: I would prefer to look at ze pictures of pretty men and ponder ze deliciousness of zis coffee.

    Me: I…uh…yeah, me too.

    But still, life can’t work like that.  I’m the first to admit that my first novel (nearly complete as I type this) was the product of nothing more than a flash of random inspiration that sprung out of absolutely nowhere.  The second novel (about 50% written) came while watching The Matrix.  That’s the fun part.  The work part comes 2.3 seconds later when, buzzing with excitement, I have to think of how on earth I’m going to spin that one cool seed of idea into a fully-fledged book.  This means thought.  A lot of it.  Pretty words are just pretty words if they’re not saying anything.  The story is as important – or moreso – than the language you couch it in, and not every nuance of plot or structure is going to present itself wrapped in a bow while you’re vacuuming or baking cookies.

    Now, buzzing with excitement for a different reason – a fun new project a friend’s just asked me to be involved in (more details on that to come, I hope) – I need to start one step closer to the beginning.  I have no clue what this story is going to be about.  Prompts in the form of words and pictures have been generously offered by twitter friends, but none have so far really “spoken” to me in the way an idea has to for me to get excited about it.

    Now, it’s tempting to procrastinate.  It always is.  The problem there is that I need to have at least part of this thing written by this Friday, which doesn’t give a lot of time for mooching around on the internet while I wait for my muse to hit me in the head with a rubber chicken.  I need to think, to make myself be inspired by something.  And I need to believe in myself, believe that the right idea WILL come to me.  If you need me, I’ll be spending most of the morning on weheartit and browsing lists of fun words.

    And drinking coffee and looking at pictures of pretty men, because hey, you never know.

    Where do you find your ideas?



    Posted by on April 12, 2011 in Uncategorized



    Diving into the deep end

    A few writer friends recently asked me on twitter if I had a blog.  At that point, the answer was, “No,” because honestly I’m not sure how interesting I can be in this format.  I’m not sure how interesting I am in any other environment, come to that. 😉  Nevertheless, though I may not be able to add much to the plethora of excellent blogs out there detailing the journey from stolen-moment writer to published author, those friends were right to tell me that I really should have a web-presence in more than 140-character bursts.

    So here I am.  And because I’m all perked-up by having just made this blog, I’m not content to leave the first post as just an introduction.  I’m going to talk about music.

    On a writing blog.  Yes. 

    The question of whether to have music on while writing gets a different answer from almost all of the writers I know.  Some need complete silence, some have quiet background music on some of the time, others can only write to classical or instrumental stuff.  Music-junkie that I am, I fall at the extreme must-have-tunes-ALLTHETIMEZOMG end of the spectrum.  I literally can’t write without it.  This reminds me of ninth grade, when I actually proved to a teacher that I perform better on exams when I have something to occupy the rather large percentage of my brain that is susceptible to being distracted by sparkles. 

    Recently, this has become even more of a “thing” for me since one of my current works-in-progress – and the one I am working on most diligently at this moment (when I’m not making blogs, writing introductory posts, baking cookies, or digging in the fridge for that last, lonely diet coke) is actually about music.  This means that those hours of playlist-building, which those uptight people in my life might label procrastination, are actually research.  Ha!  Shows what they know.

    Currently playing: an eclectic mix of guys-with-guitars of the indie-rock persuasion.  The fact that most of them look great in eyeliner has nothing to do with my appreciation of their music.  I swear.  Though my protagonist is a guy-with-guitar of the indie-rock persuasion who happens to look good in eyeliner, so if anyone asks…it’s research.  Inspiration, even.

    It’s likely that no one’s reading this yet, but if you’re out there…what are you listening to?  Do you have different playlists for different types of scenes?  Different characters?  Or are you the silence-is-golden type?



    Posted by on April 12, 2011 in Uncategorized


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