Inspiration for your fiction writing business can come from anywhere and for me last week, it arrived in the shape of a fantastic CD by British Singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran and his latest album called Divide.
I played Ed Sheeran’s latest album Divide while I was doing my hair – black girl and yeah, it takes a while – lol. Anyway this CD is absolutely fantastic and I would recommend it to anyone.
I like to think that songs are basically short stories written and sung to music so after listening to the album, it got me thinking about how songs can help with my fiction writing process. I came up with three ideas.
#1 Write What You Know
Ed Sheeran writes about his childhood in the song Castle on The Hill. He describes what it was like growing up in his home town, his friends, family and the life experiences he had along the way such as breaking his leg at six and having his first kiss at fifteen.
I have definitely used my own history when writing some of my stories. It is so much easier to write about something that you have first hand knowledge of. I used bits and pieces of my own past experiences to create certain characters for certain stories. I also incorporated and was inspired by stories of my friends and my family, making sure to change certain details so as not to offend anyone.
#2 Use Simple Language
The songs on Ed Sheeran’s album are very easy to understand. The lyrics have been constructed using every day language so you know exactly what he is singing about when you listen to the words. He proves that you do not have to use over complicated language to get your ideas or stories across.
When I read fiction I want to be entertained. I do not want to have to go look in a dictionary or do a Google search to find out what a long word means. When I write my short stories, I use simple every day language which I hope is entertaining and helps to move the story along. I don’t want to be known as a literary genius. I want to make money writing books that sell. Yes please 🙂
#3 Create Images from Your Words
I love all the songs on the album and each one provides you with enough information so that you can conjure up images of what Ed is singing about.
One particular song that I have fallen in love with is called Supermarket Flowers. It actually brought a tear to my eye when I first listened to it and I had to hit the replay button a couple of times. The song is about the death of his grandmother but seen and experienced through the eyes of his mother. It is so poignant and you can easily visualise the actions that his mother is taking as he explains how she,
“… took the supermarket flowers from the windowsill..”
“…. threw the day old tea from the cup …”
The best line in the song is,
“You were an angel in the shape of my mum.”
This is the type of imagery I hope to be able to create in my own writing. I don’t think I am quite there yet but the more that I write, the better my descriptive skills will become.
There are lots of different things that can help you with the writing process and listening to music might be something that would benefit you.
I am so happy that I purchased Ed Sheeran’s album and that I had the time to sit and listen to the whole thing. I think that he is a great storyteller. This has made me anxious to listen to other artists and their albums for more inspiration. I think Adele’s latest album will be my next purchase 🙂
Have Your Say: Does music help to inspire your writing? I would love you to share your thoughts in the section below.