A little over two weeks ago, I decided to rest my eyes a little from working on Book 3 of the Monstrum Chronicles and write something fun just for me. These breaks are cathartic and I’ll tell you why. Because when you have been pushing yourself to the limit on one project for so long, something that is dark and can really take a lot out of you, it’s healthy to take a step back, to not look at it for a little bit. When I come back to it, I’ll have a different view point. I’ll have a better idea of where I want to go with it. And it does work. I did this while working on one of my first books back in high school (an unpublished one). I wrote a 100 page fan-fiction (I know, I know. Don’t even start…) and after that was all out of my system, I finished up the project I’d been previously married to. So while I’ve worked on this little indulgence of mine, I’ve been listening to a lot of indie music, lots of stuff that I have previously not known about, including this brilliant band from the U.K., Daughter.
It was while working on this little side project of mine that I got yet another idea for a road trip book, inspired by some of these fascinating tunes. I know, another road trip book. I am really interested in the idea of having two characters with very distinct and opposite personalities sharing a small space and new surroundings together though. I’d thought that my next book might revolve around more of a sibling relationship or even one with a significant generational gap. Or…it might all be something that I keep in mind for the Night Time, Dotted Line sequel to come. Because, yes, there will be one.
But in keeping with the topic of our blog post, I was particularly moved by Daughter’s harmonies and the way that they made me think of two characters, separated after a long period of time, who have suddenly been thrown together again. People can change over time. It’s interesting to think of how we remember people to be only to be proven wrong by a subtle personality shift. And this song only makes me crave to write about that dynamic. So, today, I’ve got four songs to share with you and what it is that I see when I listen to them. Enjoy.
Human: She glanced at him in the rearview mirror, her sunglasses sliding down her nose. He looked nothing like the man she remembered. He didn’t carry himself the same way either. Normally, he’d admonish any decision that didn’t involve creating some kind of stability. He had ever since they were children. He didn’t see things the same way as she did. And now…he was actually agreeing with her? He was joining her? What was this entire thing all about? Her suspicion tasted acidic on her tongue. She’d never know unless she asked. And at this point, she didn’t want to. She was still too afraid.
Touch: She was used to sealing herself off in an invisible box. It was safe there, easy to do what needed to be done without any interruptions. It was so much easier not to have to feel, to keep a distance from it all. But at the same time, she still craved it…the idea of letting someone slip inside the glass door. To feel crowded in such a small space seemed terrifying and exciting at the same time. But mostly terrifying. She couldn’t deny the fear. It made her squirm. And yet, the hint of change, the very idea that she might not need to push people off…it made her relish the idea as the moments passed. Now all she had to do was find some way of unlocking the door.
Medicine: He could just as easily have done it alone. He had done it alone for years. It was how he got by. But this time, with something this heavy…how could he not reach out? How could he not try? While most of him had expected she’d rebuff him, ignore him even, there was an even smaller part, the part that lingered on how they’d been as children, that told him she’d come running to him with arms open and tell him it was all going to be alright. That she would be the one to make it all better. Because that had always been her. The one running to grab the band-aid’s first when he fell, the one saying that fighting was pointless and then laughing as loud as she could to try and leave behind any thoughts of anger. That’s all he needed right now. Just a small dose of that. And then, he could get through this.
Lifeforms: Dandelion seeds splinter loose, carried by the wind. These were the images of fall, of the summer fading like the color in the sky after sunset. It was sometimes hard to cling to those memories. It was the last of her childhood, before becoming an adult, having it sink it’s large claws in and carry her off. They had been so happy. And now they were so apart. So vastly different. It was like trying to cross the Grand Canyon when they had tried to find something in common with one another. How had he grown up so fast? Why hadn’t he felt the need to cling to that last dandelion seed of childhood innocence? Was it really so unimportant for him? To leave it all behind? And her?
For more information on Daughter, check out their website here!
Next week, I’ll be choosing some songs from the wondrously talented, Mary Fahl. Stay tuned!