Let music be the… oh never mind.

Maya Angelou said:

“Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.”

Since this is such a clever quote; simple, beautiful and says so much, I won’t attempt to offer you prophetic words on the importance of music or, frankly anything. Trying to compete with Maya is foolish. And impossible. But, there is something in that quote that I recognise. Namely that recently, thanks to Music, I am a better person. Okay, better person may be stretching this too far, I still watch crap TV, am insufferably self absorbed and have an unwavering commitment to Quavers – there is only so much can be done for a woman like me, BUT music has been my recent salvation.

Let me explain.

Book three, which has had so many titles I can’t begin to tell you, has been something of a challenge. You may have picked up on this via several previous blog posts. For which I can only apologise. But I can’t help it. I have no one to talk to. If I don’t offload the torture somewhere I may burst. Accepted I don’t always need to post it to a public blog for people to read but give me a break, this shizzle is hard.

Having got to a point in which every time I thought about the book I fell in love and every time I sat at my laptop I wanted to cry, I figured something wasn’t right. Was it that this has all been a ridiculous pipe dream that I should bow out of now? (If only, I hear you cry) Was it that the book was rubbish and I should quit whilst severely behind? (How many edits you say?) Or was it simply that I needed to slow down. Take a moment. Breathe and remember, IT IS ALWAYS LIKE THIS. For me at least.

A few weeks away to contemplate the fate of my protagonists and I realised that the thing holding me back was me. And a slight OCD for needing to know fine details before I really need to know them. Like how can I write an entire novel if I don’t truly understand the inner workings of a two point fractured Tibia. I  know right, a game changer!

So I sought solace in music. Because I am whimsical like that. (I’m not remotely whimsical but I like the word. Despite never being able to spell it properly first time.) And in it, came a calm that allowed me to breathe. And then a mind-set that allowed me to think. And then words. Loads of words. Words that more often than not, form sentences. Lots of sentences. Sentences that – with any luck and a plentiful battery on my iPod – will result in the second draft of my book. Ideally before the kids break up for their next school holiday and I am left looking wistfully at my laptop.

As it happens, the music on this occasion has come in the form of an album by Nils Frahm. SPACES. Whilst writing a particularly teary bit yesterday, I realised that the song title reflected that which I was writing about and sobbed a little more. God I’m so f*cking dramatic. It makes me wonder though, if, from here onward, a particular album will form the setting for each book. Is this something that helps just with this book or is it my new go to when writing. Either way, with this one, it has given me a long needed break-through.

As has finally settling on a title. One that I know will be changed should the book ever get picked up for publishing because it is too long and slightly ridiculous. But to me, it epitomises the story. It makes total sense. So, forever more… until someone who knows how to sell books tells me to change it… book three is called LOST: LOVE, LIFE AND THE BERNI INN. (IF FOUND PLEASE RETURN). And if you want to get a sense of it, feel free to pop to my Pinterest. It’s beginning to shape up.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a date with some head phones and a story I have fallen for. Thank you for your time.


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