Offtopic: Inspiration to make you weep

Just another Monday. I woke up and came to work, browsed a couple of blogs, keyed up a podcast and set to grinding through a stack of ads to be done.

Lunch came and went, punctuated by leftovers of last night’s amazing impromptu-soup I had made.

Over the weekend I eschewed all contact from WoW. Instead I dabbled my toes in Requiem: Bloodymare and ploughed through memory lane compliments of Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

I also made kale chips. Mr Tigerfeet demanded more when I told him I didn’t use up all the kale. Well, after dropping the mashed potatoes on the floor and then spilling scalding soup all over myself and the couch I was all cooke’d out on Sunday.

He’d get his kale chips on Monday.

I promised.

But my weekend, despite cooking a fantastic meal on Sunday (humble, aren’t I?) and having a nice time with some family, felt depressingly lackluster. I didn’t get a whole lot done.

No Lamentation comic, no FeralBar updates (there’d be more if I had winzip on my computer here at work), no housecleaning, no nothin’.

It’s depressing, it really is.

But then, while meandering through various food blogs, I keyed up some coldplay and almost cried.

Back in college I was an avid role-player. Not just RPGs, but actual face-to-face roleplay interaction. My venue of choice was ADRP. I made a lot of good friends, but more importantly, I learned to attach theme songs to my characters.

Our Game Master liked to run his games with a boom box by his side and an arsenal of CDs in his notebook. (Ipod? what was that?) Any change in scenery was always accompanied by a brief rummage followed by a knowing grin as he keyed up the appropriate track.

Player Characters had theme songs, NPCs had theme songs, different places even had theme songs. It was a wonderful way to set the mood while we played in an otherwise bustling student lounge.

So, as far as character theme songs go, I never really shook the habit of assigning them to my characters.

During college I wrote a terrible piece of vampire literature and scored the whole thing liberally with Thou Shalt Not. The same thing has happened with Lamentation, but instead of TSN, it’s Coldplay, VNV Nation, and a healthy dose of Andes folk music along with a little Canadian diddy that won’t get out of my head.

I find myself being heavily inspired by music and I have, in the past, written while under imaginary influence. There’s times while I’m writing where my characters feel so alive and vivid, that I can’t deny them. When I’m writing like that I don’t feel like I’m writing. Instead, I feel like I’m merely watching things as they are unfolding, like a little play in my mind.

As schizophrenic as this sounds, I’ve been assured by other writers that this state of mind is quite common amongst the more talented and a real blessing when we can grasp it.

So, I keyed up Coldplay and as Viva La Vida swelled in my ears I nearly wept as Virgil turned his face to mine and smiled.

I saw him sitting astride a bay horse, ambling down a small forest road clad in dappled sunlight. He turned to some shadowy companion to his right that I couldn’t quite see, and he smiled, laughing at some shared joke.

He showed me that he wears his hair long and wavy, just at his shoulders. Its normal light brown bleached to a sunnier chestnut did absolutely nothing to compliment his normally sallow complexion. He’s a poppet of the Govorness, though, and because of his antics, pale pallor has come into style.

He’s also the most stuck-up, spoiled-rotten little bastard (yes I use this term properly) of a younger brother you’d ever meet.

I can’t wait to start writing him again.

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  1. It’s true, music can have quite an effect on writing as well as roleplay. Whenever I hear specific songs, I think of specific characters… though the song may have nothing to do with them. Sometimes it was just a new song I’d gotten and really liked, so played it a lot while playing them; other times, it was a song I felt was appropriate to the character, like a true theme.

    I like to listen to music while writing and working, as it helps to trigger the imagination and spark creativity. Just have to keep iTunes readily available to switch to a more appropriate song whenever necessary 🙂

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