Read Around the Rainbow | How does music/noise affect your writing?

ReadAroundTheRainbow

It’s Read Around the Rainbow time! Every month, we’re a bunch of authors who blog on the same topic. This month’s topic is:

How does music/noise affect your writing?

I’m sensitive to noise. If there is too much noise around, I get panicky and sooo exhausted. Being in rooms filled with people is a nightmare, that buzz of voices. I can’t hear what the person next to me says when I’m in a situation like that, and it completely drains me. I avoid parties and gatherings like the plague LOL

When I first started writing, I only had one child. I was on parental leave, and I wrote smutty M/F for my own amusement, not with any plan of ever publishing anything. I wrote when my son was sleeping, and hubby was away working. In silence. Blessed silence.

Then I had more children, and silence became a scarce commodity. I started listening to music while writing – not because I wanted to listen to music but to drown out the noise of four children playing and a husband plucking on the guitar or whatever he’d be doing.

Nowadays, I write early in the mornings before the kids get up, so I could write in silence, but I put on music right away without thinking. It’s become part of the routine. 

I don’t really hear what I’m listening to when I write. I disappear into the story, and the music is just there, in the background, blocking out the real world, but I have a list on Spotify called Play it Again, Sam. On that list, I save songs that spark ideas.

I often put on random Spotify lists when loading the dishwasher or cooking or other fun stuff, and sometimes there is a line in a song that sparks an idea. I wrote The Drunken Dog after having heard Longer Than You’ve Been Alive by Old 97. I was baking, and it came on one of those random Spotify lists. I don’t think I’d ever heard anything by Old 97 before, but while kneading bread, a vampire rockstar came alive before my eyes LOL

Check out what the others have to say!

Addison Albright

Fiona Glass

Ellie Thomas

K.L. Noone

The Drunken Dog

thedrunkendog

Zev Nightfall has a secret. For two years, he’s been the beta in a loosely knitted werewolf pack, but he’s not a werewolf. He’s a crossbreed, part wolf, part fae, which is a death sentence in most packs. That’s not his only problem. One night he meets Otis, a vampire. Shifters and vampires aren’t friends, yet fighting is the last thing on Zev’s mind.

Otis Miller is in the middle of rebuilding his rockstar persona. Again. A hundred years ago, all he had to do was to move when people started noticing him not ageing. With cameras and social media, it doesn’t work anymore, and he isn’t sure he has the energy to start over. Then there is the shifter coming to the bar where he’s singing. He makes Otis want to jump off the stage and never look back.

Zev knows he shouldn’t get involved with a vampire; he has enough problems as it is. But Otis is alone and vulnerable, and it tugs at Zev’s heartstrings. Normally, Otis stays away from other supernatural beings, but something about Zev makes him want to curl up on his lap and forget about the world around them. But how would two people from enemy species make things work, and will Zev’s pack ever accept not only a crossbreed but a vampire as well?

Buy links:

Gay Paranormal Romance: 12,121 words

JMS Books :: Amazon :: books2read.com/TheDrunkenDog

Read Around the Rainbow | Do You Set Your Stories in the Place You Live?

ReadAroundTheRainbow

It’s Read Around the Rainbow Time! I missed last month, but we do the RAtR posts on the last Friday of every month. The last Friday of June just happens to be Midsummer Eve, which is a big thing in Sweden. Only Christmas beats it 😄

But we’re not here to talk about pickled herring, dancing around the maypole, or drinking nubbe (shot of vodka). This month’s question is:

Do you set your books in the place you live or have lived in?

One of the first stories I ever wrote (long since pulled), I wrote set in Sweden, and it was about a person who just had come out of prison after having served time. In retrospect, I realise it was a newbie mistake, but I used the Swedish legal system, and he’d served the time he would’ve been sentenced to in Sweden.

This was such a long time ago. I’d just dipped my toe in writing, and an, at the time, Goodreads M/M Romance Group moderator read it. That alone made me nervous, but he went about and tore it to shreds. Completely. Had it happened now, I’d shrugged and moved on, but back then, it hurt, especially since, in my world, I wasn’t wrong. Just because he lives in a big country with a fucked up legal system doesn’t mean he’s right – see, still upset LOL.

Since that day, I’ve been avoiding setting stories in Sweden and/or using Swedish rules and laws and so on.

That doesn’t mean I don’t set the stories in Sweden in my mind, I do. It’s my climate, my nature, and when I picture my main character walking down a street, it’s a street where the cars drive on the right side, the painted lines on the street are white, and the lampposts are grey and so on.

Black Bird takes place in the city I grew up in. They walk the streets I used to walk, the river goes through town, the wind blows in from the sea, Nash lives in an apartment where my friend used to live, Arlo lives in a house where my sister used to live, and so on. I translate the names of the places, like Nash’s apartment, which is on Tradesman Street. That street is called Köpmansgatan in reality, which translates into Trademan Street.

So short answer: No, reading them, you won’t be able to tell they’re set in a city I’ve lived or in the woods where I live now.

Real answer: Yup, almost all of them have something picked from somewhere I used to live, but I won’t tell you that, and the names are translated so they will be easier for you to consume.

In the Up North stories, I borrow things from when I lived in the north of Sweden. In most other stories, there is something from Falkenberg, where I grew up, and in Keep it Down! which will be released on July 9th, Eason lives in my old apartment. He has a broken leg, I had a broken foot, living on the third floor without a lift. Good times 😆

I used to live close to that white church. I walked past it every day when I walked the dogs.

Check out what the others have written:

Nell Iris

Lillian Francis

Fiona Glass

Ellie Thomas

K.L. Noone

Amy Spector

Addison Albright

Holly Day

Read Around the Rainbow | Weird Internet Searches

ReadAroundTheRainbow

It’s time for the second Read Around the Rainbow post! The theme this time is internet searches. Countless times, I’ve been chatting with author friends, and we’ve all been muttering about how we hope the police won’t ever check our search history, so I know I’m not alone in thinking that LOL Shall we dive in?

Weird Internet Searches

Everyone googles… I bet those who write historical stories google a lot of legit things. I’m so in awe of those authors because I would never have the patience to fact check. And I’ll let you in on a little secret. The reason I often write paranormal is that I make the rules. I create a world; I set the rules, and no one can tell me I’ve got my facts wrong. The main reason is of course that I like it, but I would lie if I said the freedom and the minimal research weren’t part of it.

But, when you have rampant werewolves running around, strewing bodies left and right, you need to know a little about what’s happening to those bodies. Even when werewolves rule the story, some things have to match our world or the reader would feel lost.

DeathSome time back, A.L. Lester and I were talking about bodies, so I sent her the link to a blog post I wrote many years ago. I had a quick glance at it now, and I was a little confused because I researched how long someone would survive in an air-tight room, the signs of suffocation and so on, but I don’t mention that in the blog post, so it must’ve been at another occasion.

Anyway, the internet searches… Have you ever looked at body farms?? They bury bodies or parts of bodies and research what happens. Some are left in the open, some a buried, and the scientists dig them up at different stages of death to have a look.

I’m so glad that’s not my job!

The blog post I wrote is a cheat sheet of the different stages of death. It took me to several weird sites around the internet. Several.

Last summer, there was a run-over magpie on the road outside the church in the village. It was a sweltering day and the smell… I walked past and thought to myself that I should memorise it so I could add it to a story if I’ll ever need the stench of a dead magpie – weird writer brain, I know – but it’s impossible to put words on. I hurried along, holding my breath because yuck! Also, where are the foxes when you need them? They hunt my hens, so why can’t they clean up the dead birds? Normally, they do a pretty good job of that, so it must’ve been that there had been too many people around for them to get close.

Anyway, let’s leave death behind us and see what the others have been googling:

A.L. Lester

Nell Iris

Fiona Glass

Amy Spector

Ellie Thomas

Holly Day

Addison Albright

K.L. Noone