Words & Music Monday with Jackie Morse Kessler

This week’s feature is with one of my very favorite people. Jackie Morse Kessler’s young adult Riders of the Apocalypse series is amazingly awesome, and so unique. If you  haven’t read HUNGER or RAGE, you need to go… now… buy… read. And tomorrow, the third book in the quartet will be released, LOSS. I’m so happy Jackie took time away from her crazy schedule to chat music with us, today.

Mood Music By Jackie Morse Kessler

I love, love, love music and its connection with writing. It helps me set a scene. It can put me in a specific mood. It can help me channel characters. Music, appropriately, rocks. Heck, one of the major characters in the Riders of the Apocalypse series looks, sounds, and sings like Kurt Cobain! (No, I wasn’t a Nirvana fan before I started writing those books. It just happened like that.)   When I was writing the Hell series, music played a huge part. Of course, the main character worked as an erotic dancer, so the club scenes all had music in them. But it was more than just background noise. Jesse, the heroine, also expressed herself through dancing when the music played. Music, and her reaction to it, was very much part of who Jesse was. (Whenever I hear the AC/DC tune “Hell’s Bells,” of course I think of Jesse. Ditto “Highway to Hell.”) Another music/Hell example: When I was writing The Road to Hell, there was one scene in which Jesse had to summon the demon Daunuan. To get me in the right frame of mind, I played “Pimpf” by Depeche Mode over and over again. Even now, when I read that scene, I can hear the music in the background.   At one point, I had way too much time on my hands and made a Hell on Earth soundtrack. Here you go: < http://www.jackiekessler.com/books/music.php>   As for the Riders of the Apocalypse series, whenever I hear Nirvana on the radio, I automatically think of Death. I wrote Hunger so quickly that I didn’t make a soundtrack or listen to music when I was working on the book, but I think that “Come As You Are” is a fine song for that book—specifically, for Lisa, the protagonist. For Rage, there were a number of songs that I kept replaying, especially “Sound of Madness” by Shinedown. In terms of Nirvana, the best song there would be “About a Girl.”   For LOSS, it was all about Linkin Park. One song in particular is the theme of the book: “New Divide.” And no, this isn’t a plug for the second Transformers movie.  (But if Michael Bay wanted to turn LOSS into a movie, I’d be willing to hear him out!) There’s a climactic scene at the end of part two in which this song sets the scene perfectly. You’ll know it when you read it. 😉   As for Breath, the final story in the series—which I’m writing now—there are a number of songs that are on the book’s soundtrack, including “Snuff” by Slipknot and “I Will Not Bow” by Breaking Benjamin. Actually, there’s one line in “Snuff” that made Death’s story all pull together for me. (I’ll leave it to you to determine which line it was.) And the fabulous Rachel Caine sent me, via iTunes, a whole bunch of songs for the book, which was so completely amazing of her that her name should officially mean “Completely Amazing.” Nivana-wise, there are many songs for this book, especially their cover of the Meat Puppets’ “Oh Me.”   So rock on, everyone! And write on. 😉

GIVEAWAY DETAILS:   LOSS by Jackie Morse Kessler comes out March 20, 2012!   GIVEAWAY: One lucky commenter below will win a small cover poster of LOSS—and will be entered in the grand prize drawing! The grand prize winner will receive signed copies of HUNGER, RAGE and LOSS—and will get to name a character in BREATH, the fourth book in the Riders of the Apocalypse series. The grand prize winner will be picked on Sunday, April 1, 2012. No foolin’.

** So… Jackie’s got LOTS of prizes to give away!!! Who wants to win some goodies?? And a character named after you in a book!!! *I* want to win that!!!! **

Be sure to check back tomorrow to read my review of this amazing new book, LOSS.


  1. Comment by Moirae the fates:

    I love this series can’t wait to get my hands on Loss tomorrow!

  2. Comment by Lisa Kessler:

    Hey Jackie! *Waving*

    I love your playlist! 🙂 Music definitely help keep me in the zone too…

    The cover for Loss looks awesome!!!

    Good luck witht he release!!! I hope it sells like crazy!

    Lisa 🙂

  3. Comment by Mary Preston:

    THANK YOU!! I found this very interesting. It’s always great to see the link between the music & words.


  4. Comment by TRACI Goodwin:

    awesome. looking forward to the book.

  5. Comment by Lisa Stafko:

    Can’t wait! Thanks for the music:)

  6. Comment by Amy S.:

    I loved Hunger, and am looking forward to reading the rest of the books in this series. Thanks for the chance to win the poster; it is beautiful!

  7. Comment by Jennifer:

    Thank you all for commenting… the winner has been notified by email. Hope to see you back again for the next feature/contest 🙂

  8. Ping from LOSS Blog Tour « Jackie Morse Kessler | Blog:

    […] at Diary of a Bookworm March 18, 2012: Interviewed by Paperback Dolls March 19, 2012: Guest post at Books Make Me Happy March 20, 2012: Guest post and review at The Book Smugglers/Giveaway at the Deadline Dames March […]

  9. Ping from LOSS blog tour recap « Jackie Morse Kessler | Blog:

    […] Bookshelf Literary Escapism Book Monsters The Compulsive Reader Diary of a Bookworm Paperback Dolls Books Make Me Happy The Book Smugglers Deadline Dames I Swim for Oceans Presenting Lenore The Story Siren A Backwards […]

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