Five years ago, I attended a writing retreat with a large group of authors who all debuted in 2014. We spent a long weekend working and writing and talking about goals. One night, we were asked to talk about where we hoped to be in five years. There were a variety of answers: I want to sell foreign rights to my work. I want to … Continue reading Celebrate the Steps
I love music. We all know that, right? I mean, I obsess over it. I can get lost for hours in my Spotify Discovery and New Release Radar playlists. I constantly browse live music shows near me. One time, at Thanksgiving, when my mom asked us all to say something we’re thankful for, I said music. (My brother made endless fun of me for it, but for real- it’s just important to me. I need it.)
There are songs I love for their lyrics, there are songs I love for their beat, there are songs I love for the way they calm me. Happy songs, sad songs, songs that help me work, songs that remind me of certain periods of my life—I have lots of reasons to say, “Oh I love this song!” about any number of songs.
But right now I want to talk about a completely different category of songs: the ones that make me stop the first time I hear them and restart them so I can soak in all the words. I hear pieces of myself in them, even the quiet pieces that I don’t say out loud to anyone. Those are the songs that I belt out in my car or my kitchen, thrilled that someone else put me into a song. I don’t just love those songs. They MEAN something to me. I’ve collected all those songs in a playlist called Lifeline on Spotify. If you’re ever curious about the songs I can’t live without- feel free to check it out. (Just know that it’s a little like reading my diary. I can handle it if you can.)
A while ago, I had the idea to create a Megan Whitmer soundtrack, full of the songs that explain who I am, who I’ve been at various points, who I hope to be someday. The thing is, for some of these songs, it’s really obvious to me why they’re on my soundtrack. There’s a line somewhere in them that totally speaks to me. But in some of the songs, I really can’t explain it. There’s not a specific line. For those, it’s the beat, or the message, or the overall feel of it that makes me think it just has to be on my playlist, even if I’m not sure why.
So- here it is, along with some of my favorite lines from some of the songs. Take a listen, and then tell me a song (or ten) that would be on your personal playlist.
You’ve got every little piece of me scattered all throughout our history, and put together carefully so I’m what you want to see.
-Every Little Piece by Nick Flora
I gave away my phone.
-All At Sea by Jamie Cullum (This song has been THE SONG for me ever since I first heard it over 10 years ago. The piano, the voice, the lyrics—nothing has ever come close to topping it for me.)
She’s imperfect but she tries. She is good but she lies. She is hard on herself. She is broken and won’t ask for help. She is messy but she’s kind. She is lonely most of the time. She is all of this mixed up and baked in a beautiful pie. She is gone but she used to be mine.
-She Used To Be Mine by Sara Bareilles
Hold me up into the light and study every part of me. I’m an open book, no I don’t mind, but sometimes I’m hard to read.
-Excavate by Macklemore
Lean with it, rock with it, when we gonna stop with the lyrics that mean nothing? We were gifted with thought. Is it time to move our feet to an introspective beat? It ain’t the speakers that bump hearts, it’s our hearts that make the beat.
-Holding On To You by Twenty One Pilots
Ok. That’s enough baring my soul for one day. Your turn. What songs define you?
It’s time to start a new book, and I am not ready. I’m never ready. That’s the whole problem. If you ask me what I need to be ready, I can’t even tell you. I don’t know. All I know is that I’m not ready. I wrote Between and its sequel without worrying about being ready. I wanted to write them, so I did. Somewhere … Continue reading I Am Not Ready.
If you read my last post about Artist Dates, you know that the whole idea of taking time to do something alone that nourishes my inner artist was a hard one for me to embrace. I was worried that it would seem selfish, or that I wouldn’t find any value in them. Sure, I enjoy my alone time, but would it necessarily make me a … Continue reading Thirty Ideas for Artist Dates
I’ve been thinking a lot about self-care lately. In Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, she talks about the importance of setting aside time for yourself each week. She calls them Artist Dates. The idea is that you have to give yourself breaks in order to refill the well, so to speak. From Cameron’s web site: The Artist Date is a once-weekly, festive, solo expedition to … Continue reading The Artist’s Way and Artist Dates. Alternate Title: Am I Really Allowed to Schedule Dates with Myself?
When it comes to writing, I often worry about doing things the right way. What’s the right way to blog? Do I need to focus solely on posts about writing? Should I post something every day? How do I promote it? Here’s the thing. I want to write. I want to write long things, like novels, and short things, like short stories and blog posts and poems. Writing is … Continue reading Am I Doing This Right?
Suzy G is a writer of dark, lyrical things, and I know that any time I am lucky enough to read something she has written, I’m going to be both in love with and envious of her talent. I’m so happy she sent me something to share here–she’s one of those writers whose work I constantly want other people to read. (She’s also one of … Continue reading SPOOKY SHORT STORIES: The Learning Season by Suzy G
Sarah Blair is an author, podcaster, mommy, teacher, and all around outstanding human. She’s been one of my favorite people from the moment we met. You know how some people are just calming to your soul? Sarah is that for me. You can learn more about her at http://www.sarahlblair.com, and listen to her on the The X-Cast: An X-Files Podcast. Check out the giveaway at … Continue reading SPOOKY SHORT STORIES: Darkness Creeping by Sarah Blair
Reggie Whitley was one of the first writers I met on twitter, and his creepy short stories have always been some of my favorites. I was happy when he agreed to send me something to post for my blog party, mostly because it’s been a while since I’ve read a Reggie story. You can find him on twitter at @_RScottWhitley_. THAT’S NOT FUNNY … Continue reading SPOOKY SHORT STORIES: That’s Not Funny by Reggie Whitley
I have major, major love for true trime podcasts. That isn’t a hot take. I realize everyone is riding the true crime wave these days. Still, I find people who love true crime and haven’t heard of some of my favorite podcasts, or haven’t heard of podcasts PERIOD, and I immediately feel like, “This is it. It’s why this person needs me in his or … Continue reading Five Favorites: True Crime Podcasts