Thursday, 16 April 2009


I’m one of those writers who needs silence during composition. A dust mote falling onto the soft carpet in the next room can disturb my thoughts, rendering creative output impossible for the rest of the day. I cocoon myself from noise as far as possible; not easy living in a city, next to a university, by a train station, with neighbours who think the murdering of musical instruments an inevitable path to progression.

I know some writers, though, who work with music on, claiming it stimulates creative thought, as long as it’s only instrumental. I’ve tried it, but the demand on that part of the brain results in synaptic overload. Even an ostensibly soothing harmony sounds like a fork drawn across the best china; it might as well be Metallica.

But then I discovered THIS. The perfect antidote to the urban melee. It was put on to fill a blank slot when a radio station closed down, but when they took it off, the complaints rolled in. Hence its now permanent home. Ah, nature.


Vienna Maurel said...

Interesting, the bird song... I am like you, I need my silence, which is a problem sometimes. I've tried the classical instrumental music trick, but I end up singing away and making up lyrics for it! Everything but writing what I am set to write. It's like my brain is ready to run away at the first chance although, paradoxically, is contantly drawn towards the story which cries to be written. Once I found a CD called 'The Surf of the Ocean' and it was basically that, the sound of waves. I found it helped.

TOM J VOWLER said...

The birdsong works for me, Vienna (what a great name), as it's just like having a window open were I to live in the country. I wonder if rural folk get fed up with the sounds of nature and put on a CD of traffic and arguing neighbours, interspersed with the occassional siren...