Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Musical writing prompts

I've let the writing prompts in the sidebar slip this week, largely because I've been engrossed in what I still call, 'The French Idea', because that was the subject title of all the original planning emails.

So to make it up to you, here's one of the exercises we did - and which produced some good work. I played a blast of different songs - just a minute - and then we all wrote in response to the emotional feelings evoked. I tried to pick songs about wanting something, and not just love!

What was interesting was that afterwards, almost without the writers being aware of it, the words in their pieces echoed the exact themes of the songs. Here are two of the clips we used if you want to try it yourself (although we didn't have the videos, you might have to listen with your eyes shut first, particularly I think to the Joanna Newsom)


jem said...

I’m not sure if it quite worked as it should for me - or perhaps there isn’t a should in these things, I found it a little hard to focus on writing to the emotions evoked, I think my pieces got a bit lost, and responded more to the sound of the song itself, but some unexpected results none the less. From the second one -

- - - -

A steady heartbeat played on a single note. I’m plucked over and over. A voice like chalk on a blackboard, chalking one hundred lines of ‘I will not whisper, I will not whisper’. She slides up and down my spine. I don’t understand her words but I feel her teeth. She is playing me, eating me, breathing need against my eyelids. She is pulling teeth, and on the root of each is a little pink string attached to a little pink kite that was flying inside me. And until now, I never knew it was there.

- - - -

Thanks prompting us.

Kathryn said...

That was really interesting. Once I got over the distraction of the DFS advert, I surprised myself. My reactions to each piece were clearly connected yet in opposition; the results were a little cliched but fairly representative of my current state! I think I need therapy ...

Sarah Salway said...

Jem, I like the idea of being plucked by the music. And yes, Kathryn, I think everyone was surprised by what came out. Glad you enjoyed it.