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Music & Writing: A Curious Correlation

Updated: Jan 7

Some of you who have known me for almost a decade know I was previously a music person. I performed on stage, recorded song covers (that I uploaded to my second channel) and even composed a little. There is a secret connection between music and writing that applies to me. It's a little something that might be useful for you if you're as heavily affected by music as me.


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Before I launch into a nerdy rant about music and writing, here's an even nerdier image of my first attempt with Reaper composing music on random VSTs lmao!! Yes, it's only there for the thumbnail, but please look forward to my original music someday as I transition from writing books to including songs as well.


Q: What kind of music do I listen to while writing?


Generally, I don't listen to English songs when I write because it clashes with the language output function when I write. Subconsiously, I have written parts of song lyrics that I hear during writing sessions whenever I listened to English songs, usually nightcore mixes.


Over the years, the things I listen to while writing evolved. I used to listen to a lot of J-rock, utaite covers and anime songs in general. However, as my ability to understand Japanese improved, the amount of Japanese songs I could listen to while writing decreased as well.


Then came the K-pop era when I listened to nothing but K-pop songs while writing. The beats were great and helped me set the rhythm required to achieve 10,000 words a day. I never did learn Korean even after listening to a heap of K-pop. However, ever since Gen 4 started making their debut, the music industry changed and I found it difficult to keep up with the 'new' type of beats. It didn't help that my health became worse so the music changed once again.


Nowadays, it's a mix of everything. I tend to gravitate towards music without words more. Alternatively, working within the chaos of playing 5 different livestreams from vtubers in more than 1 type of language is also the 'music' I listen to. Water or fireplace ASMRs work as well although they're not quite music. Basically, I listen to anything that tickles my brain waves because coffee isn't doing a very good job now even if I drink it. Unfortunately.


Q: What kind of music do I like?


I like many kinds of music. However, I'm unable to listen to them all the time because I'm usually working. However, if I were to describe certain genres and styles, I'm stuck between rock, dance music and classical fusion with hard beats. Music from the 2000s to 2010s were the best in my opinion. Sure, there are many good songs that came after but none so iconic in identity from those days in my opinion.


Genres I like:

- Utaite (Mafumafu, Chogakusei, Eve, ATR, Nqrse, Reol etc)

- J-rock / Visual Kei (Gazette, Miyavi, Xepher, SuG, Diaura etc)

- Anime & Game Songs

- Math Rock

- Nightcore

- K-pop (BTS, Dreamcatcher, Mamamoo, G-Idle, Big Bang, Taemin, Daniel Kang etc)

- Fusion (Ethan Bortnick, Apocalyptica, Aurora, Erutan etc)

- Alternative Rock, Rock (Nickleback, Three Days Grace, Set It Off, Linkin Park, Evanescence, Violet Orlandi etc)

- Dance Music (Lady gaga, Rihanna, Pussycat Dolls, David Guetta, Bebe Rexha, Aron Chupa & Lil Sis Nora etc)


I'm always exporing new music so the list is not exhaustive.


Q: How would I describe my music sense?


Deep. It's the only way I know how to explain this. It's very easy for me to immerse in the beats. Without music, the silence kills me like slow poison. With music, it's either a one-way trip to heaven or hell. Either way, I was born doomed.


I simply cannot exist without music. That's my music sense. Music is my world (even if I ran away from it for 6 years).


Q: Does music inspire my writing?


Yes and no. It doesn't inspire the idea or plot. However, using the right kind of music, I'm able to grasp the emotions of a scene quicker and more accurately while staying immersed during a scene when I write. I could still write without music but the magic simply wouldn't be the same.


Likewise, it is hell not being able to find the right kind of music for a scene. I don't always know the song I need and sometimes, the song I thought I needed isn't the right one. It's a complex situation of using music to translate feelings into words. It might not work for everyone but I certainly need it.


Q: Can I write without music?


Yes. However, it's not pleasant. The brain burns quicker from the visualisation without music as I'm not constantly immersed into the world or a scene. It also means I won't be able to write for more than an hour.


Q: Some music recommendations?


I have so many to recommend that I won't be able to fit them here. Besides, I believe there will always be great music waiting to be discovered. However, a song that saved my life and made me walk back from my planned suicide years ago is sang by Mafumafu (and only his version of this song works). I would like to recommend this to anyone who's feeling hopeless in life or in a very dark place. His music has reached so many like me and I want to share this.



I'm trying to cover this song on my second channel, raws are uploaded but the mixer isn't done yet. Stay tuned for it even if I'm not as good as Mafumafu!


In conclusion...


It's not easy for me to find the music I love to write to, but when I do find something, I stick to it until it no longer works. It's really sad. I started writing books because I couldn't find the kind of books I wanted to read. Similarly, I will start making songs because I can't find the kind of songs I want to listen to. However, I think writing and music need each other. I wouldn't ever choose one over the other.

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