Music and Writing

Music is fantastic. It can give you chills and inspire you; not to mention be a great thing to bring people together. Listening to music can be a great way to help you write as well, or even before you write as inspiration.

However, some people get distracted by listening to music whilst writing. Perhaps it’s the lyrics or maybe you just need complete silence. It doesn’t mean you have to be in the no-music club though!

If you find yourself getting distracted by the lyrics, an obvious answer would be instrumental songs. But that makes it really hard, right? They’re generally from musicals (although Coldplay does some instrumental songs) and then they’re made for the musicals, so can be difficult. But can I recommend the Doctor Who soundtrack. Sure, some of it is a bit ‘Who-y’, but some of it is really great, and there is plenty to choose from.

Another thing you can try is making a playlist of every story you write. If it’s a short story, I guess you could listen to one song on repeat (sorry to distract, but I think I’ve got deja vu. Have I written about this before?). But it’s fun to make playlists for your stories too, as well as being helpful! I don’t know about other phones/music players, but on the iPod Nano that I have, you can’t name playlists (so I have about 10 that are just ‘Playlist 1’, ‘Playlist 2’ etc. And yet I still know which each one is!) so I’d suggest trying to plugging it into the computer to name the playlist. However, make it on your music player. Then you can scroll through, see each one in a small group or even individually, and it’ll make you think about it more.

Finally, if you get distracted whilst writing, do what I mentioned before and listen before you write. If you know there’s a certain scene you’ve got to write today, try and think of a song to fit it and listen to it just before you write. Sit back and truly listen to it. That way it won’t distract you when you’re actually writing, but you’ll be in the mind set for the scene.

Music can be a great help to you when you’re writing, so use it! There’s no point in overlooking tools that are right on your doorstep.

But, if music doesn’t help you, that’s okay too. There are, of course, many other things out there that can aid your writing. You just have to find them!

Hope that helped! Comments, questions? Shoot! 😀 


Some of my favourite albums for writing are Doctor Who (Instrumental) for Doctor Who fanfiction and general tone setting, Up All Night by One Direction for upbeat and happily romantic stories, Mamma Mia! (musical) for upbeat stories and ones with a positive message and In My Dreams by the Military Wives for ‘slow’, romantic and sad stories. If those help then that’s great! I also listen to a mixture of songs by different albums and different artists and stuff too.

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