I treasure my playlists more than my tattered, dog-eared Roget’s Thesaurus. Why? My playlist puts me there, where I need to be when I’m writing. If I’m not there, I can’t expect the reader to be. Some writers need silence. No distractions. Some need the crackle of a television. Background noise. I need a soundtrack of carefully chosen songs that convey the mood, emotion, and action of the scenes in my head. Only when they’re matched with that perfect song, do the scenes find their way to paper (or the keyboard). I may only have five songs in a particular playlist but I play them on a loop so I’m always there.

I wrote a very dramatic, pivotal scene yesterday. With the television on—it was a The Walking Dead marathon! I thought I did okay with the television, rather than my playlist, on in the background. Until I re-read the scene today. Way over the top melodramatic! I laughed out loud. It came no where even close to conveying the emotions I wanted conveyed. It read like a bad, really bad, bodice-ripping romance. And it’s in the suspense genre, not romance!

I deleted most of the scene, tuned in to my playlist and re-worked it. Thanks to Maroon 5’s Come Away to the Water for taking me there.