Writing with Music: a Creative Delicacy 

I love words. I love the sound of them as they roll off my tongue and I love the vivid imagery they create in my mind’s eye. The discovery of new words in a book or movie excites me because I get to update my vocabulary. Words no matter how complex don’t scare me; unlike numbers which I find quite intimidating. There is indeed beauty in simplicity: when the simple everyday words you and I use are well-crafted to make such profound sense, I am awed.


I love music. I love the lyrics and rhythm combination which has the power to excite, relax and make me ponder over issues I may not usually pay much attention to. I choose music for its lyrical content over its musical composition. It should inspire or stir some emotion in me. If the lyrics don’t settle well with my spirit, it’s just noise to my ears.

Writing and listening to music is as enjoyable as watching a good movie with well-done subtitles. Just as I can do without the subtitles, I can write without music when it’s unavailable. But background music sets a good mood for me to type out words which turn out to be paragraphs and then end in a finished piece.

Sometimes, the theme of the write-up at the moment determines the songs I listen to. I don’t have a playlist. I just put my music collection on shuffle and leave it to play. I may skip or repeat certain tracks depending on the mood or time of day. Some songs help the creative juices to flow more freely and thus cause me to type faster; others make me stop typing just so as I can sing along and just enjoy the music. Some songs actually give me ideas for future posts. 

Looking for writing ideas? Check your music collection!

Listening to music whiles typing feels like giving my brain a gentle massage as I employ it to cook up sentences for me. During daytime, I prefer the loud and energetic ones. But for the night sessions, I go for the slow, easy-going songs to calm me down to write but also keep me awake. 

I love the solo act of writing but totally relish the two-course meal of listening and writing done simultaneously. It’s one combination I’ll never tire of and doesn’t give me side-effects. Christian and pop songs do it for me.

What about you? Do you like to listen to music whiles writing or do you like to write in the comfort of silence? What songs do you enjoy listening to as you write? Do you have a playlist or do you just let it play? How does it make you feel? Kindly share your thoughts.

© Josephine Amoako 2016

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