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  • Writer's pictureS.E. Reed

Music & Writing

Recently I was asked by an agent to submit my writing playlist as part of my #query package. Since I’m highly motivated to find an agent, I’m willing to share parts of myself that I might not otherwise do so. Therefore, I obliged and linked up the playlist associated with my manuscript, but it got me thinking… Do you listen to music while you write? And if you do, are you willing to share it with others as a representation of your writing?

Truthfully, even though I shared my playlist, I’m on the fence about it– and I’m going to explain why.

But first, let me give you a little background on my personal journey with music. I started playing classical piano when I was seven. By high school I was singing in the school choir and jamming out on electric guitar (hoping to be the next Courtney Love). In college I was a DJ and spun electronic breakbeats at underground raves, giving myself over completely to the music and my fans.

Now as a 40 year old mom of three, I dunno, I literally listen to EVERYTHING. My taste in music varies widely!

So, knowing my background, you probably get the picture. I have playlists for every mood and every book and short story I’m working on. I have my favorite songs that evoke certain emotions… for ME. But, my journey has been long and winding. What songs pump me up for a fight scene might be wildly different from what gets YOU going. What music makes me sob and cry during a sad scene might not resonate with your heart strings. Or *gasp* you might be the kind of writer/reader who needs peace & quiet in order to engage with the story.

For me, music is both an escape and a release– it helps take me to a higher place my words struggle to find on their own.

For example, right now I’m listening to Crown by Jinco & SVNAH. I’ve been editing a YA Fantasy novel and I’m working on a scene where the villain princess discovers a dark book that convinces her to kill her brother. The song is PERFECT for this scene. But– to anyone else it might be completely over the top. Hey, that's okay, lyrical Drum&Bass isn't for everyone.

Therefore, the question remains. Are you willing to share the music of your heart and soul with an agent in order to gain representation? Are you willing to share the music that helped inspire you with your readers?

Check out my post on The Art of the Query if you need help getting started (regardless of sharing a playlist with the Literary Agent).


S.E. Reed

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