For this week’s W&MM feature, we’re welcoming the author of two awesome urban fantasy series. Shannon K Butcher writes the ‘Edge’ series, and just released #6 in the ‘Sentinal Wars’ series, DYING WISH.
There are lots of sources of inspiration for writers, but for me, the most crucial one is music. I have to have silence or white noise when I’m writing, but in between writing sessions, there’s nothing like the emotion of a heart-pounding beat or the gut-wrenching lyrics of a really great song to get my creative juices flowing.
Whenever I’m setting out to design a new series or plot a new book, I’m constantly seeking out music that clearly captures the emotional landscape I’m trying to create. Sometimes there’s a single phrase in a song that is just right. Sometimes it’s not the words as much as the way the music makes me feel that puts it on my short list. Whatever it is about a song that attracts me, I listen to it over and over throughout the writing process to help remind me of feelings I was originally trying to evoke. That touchstone keeps me on track and focused.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a song is worth a hundred-thousand, or approximately the length of one of my books. J
And because some of you may want to know, here are a few of the bands that are my go-to sources of inspiration, listed in no particular order: Rise Against, Breaking Benjamin, Disturbed, Red, Papa Roach, 10 Years, Skillet, Shinedown, Staind, Three Days Grace and 30 Seconds to Mars.
The next time you’re stuck and searching for that one unique thing that makes your character or scene come to life, give music a shot.