Yasmine Galenorn, New York Times bestselling author, is known for her playlists and being a big believer in the power of music during the writing process. Her playlists appear in the back of most of her books as well as on her website for readers to enjoy. Today she stops by EverAfter to share her thoughts on the importance of music.
How do you make your playlists for your books?
I think about the mood for each book and what songs fit that mood. I may write organically—the book evolving as I go—but I know the general mood of what’s going to happen when I start. And so I take a couple hours to go through my music library and decide what songs fit. Some of them are automatic—on every playlist, but most are geared to the specific book. The list will evolve as I go, and I generally remove some songs and add a few others during the writing of the book.
Do you use the entire playlist for the whole book or specific parts for certain sections or types of scenes?
Specific parts for different scenes. I generally group the songs on my music player into categories—action music, sensual music, magickal/serious music, music for when something traumatic happens, etc.. I’ll often put songs on repeat for a scene. I wrote three chapters of Autumn Whispers (during the fall of Elqaneve) to two songs that I played over and over and over—Here and Now, by Android Lust, and Beautiful Being, by Eastern Sun. It’s a good thing for my husband and my assistant that my office has a door on it.
How does the music impact your writing process?
There are days when I work in silence—especially those days when I have to haul out my Dragon voice software because of my tendinitis. Sometimes I work to Netflix—but it has to be shows I’ve seen before or I’ll get caught up watching them instead of using them as background. Except for Dark Shadows—I have the complete series and I can watch that as I write because soap operas move so slowly. But the music…I’m an audiophile, my body and moods react to music and I can get lost in it very easily. It sucks me into the mood so deeply that I’ll just vanish into the scene and boom…an hour later, there it is. Some days, though, I get caught up in listening to it TOO much and not writing, so those days I tend to work in silence or with some show going.
Yes, definitely. Always always Gary Numan—my fave. His music fits my writing. Also will usually have some Mark Lanegan on there. Certain songs are a given (two, off the top of my head, are In the Waiting Line by Zero 7, and Bitter Sweet Symphony by the Verve). Also, each series has what I call its theme song. So does every book.
Series Theme Songs:
The Chintz ‘n China Series: (Didn’t really have any playlists for them—played whatever suited me at the time)
The Indigo Court series: Half-Light by Low (Secondary song: Rolling Under by King Black Acid)
Otherworld Series: Believe, by the Bravery (Secondary song: Demon Days by the Gorillaz)
Fly By Night Series: Back in Black, by AC/DC (Secondary Song: Nowhere to Go by Arch Leaves)
Whisper Hollow Series: All Souls Night by Loreena McKennitt, (Secondary Song: Cloak of Feathers by Damh the Bard)
Lily Bound Series: Well, we’ll see won’t we? ~grins~
The last few books’ theme songs:
Darkness Raging: Nowhere to Go by Arch Leaves
Autumn Thorns: Rolling of the Stones by the Heathen Kings
Does the music on your playlists also get put into your casual listening?
Oh yah. As I said, I’m an audiophile I love music, especially darkwave, industrial goth, and darker Euro bands. I have playlists for holidays, for sex, for parties…I LOVE playlists. 😉
What’s one piece of writing advice you would like to share?
Write something you love. Because halfway into the book, you don’t want to be sitting there thinking, I’m so bored… The reader will sense it.
About the Author:
New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly bestselling author Yasmine Galenorn writes the Otherworld Series, the Fly By Night Series, and the upcoming Whisper Hollow Series. Yasmine lives in the Seattle area with her husband, and is the mother of four cats. Visit her Website, her Facebook page, or find her on Twitter!