Inspiration Through Music: Peter Mulvey

Image result for peter mulvey

If you’ve been following the Monstrum Chronicles blog for some time now, you’ll know that I love discovering new music and writing alongside said music. Recently, my boyfriend introduced me to a musician whose style can only be described as part Ray LaMontagne, part phenomenal guitar, and part…sunshine and coffee. Have you ever listened to someone sing and been able to practically see them smile through their voice? Peter Mulvey is this musician.

I was lucky enough to meet him at a recent performance in Hallowell at the beginning of June. He’s one of those people with a charming personable presence, the kind who can entertain with word and song and that you can never grow tired of listening to. He’s become my go to for car rides, down time in the house, and yes, even for certain story ideas. As I’ve been thinking more and more about starting a sequel for Night Time, Dotted Line (my dramedy), I’ve found that Mulvey’s voice resonates with both of the main characters, Calleigh and Spencer, well; particularly with Calleigh though.

Today, I’m going to share a few of Peter Mulvey’s songs with you along with some of the images that his songs conjure in my mind. This is a fun little exercise that you can do in your own spare time. Just take a pencil and paper, play to the songs below, and see what comes to mind when you listen. Enjoy!

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Busy Sickly Update…

That feeling you get after you’ve been in bed with a terrible headache ALL WEEKEND…and now, it’s your day to go back to work and you SUDDENLY feel better?

That’s been my weekend, folks.

I managed to get the most demonic headache, a combination of sinus, stress, and muscle all rolled up in a ball and tossed at my head. The sinus part was caused by a Calamondin tree that I have in my apartment (or should I say “had”). The Calamondin is a strange mini fruit tree that has a tiny orange fruit that tastes much like a lime. For some reason, despite it being November, this tree has been rapidly blooming and growing more little oranges. Our weather here in Maine has been warmer than it should be and for some reason, this tree is just absolutely loving it. Problem is that the pollen from these little flowers is super potent and my entire apartment smells like them. One day of sitting here breathing it in made my head feel like I was in Willy Wonka’s tunnel of craziness. The tree is now at my parent’s house after my mom gratefully came and picked it up.

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Night Time, Dotted Line: On the Set!

Night Time, Dotted Line Film

It always amazes me the people that I meet during my day job. Last week before I went on vacation, I ended up helping a couple of guys with hiking boots for a trip to go hiking up north. Both were students from Maine Media, which provides workshops and college courses for anyone interested in film, photography, multimedia, writing, etc. While at the register, one of them noticed my book, “Night Time, Dotted Line” on display, read the back blurb, and commented that it looked like a fun idea to film. Two days later, he came back, bought the book, read it in one night, and asked if he could film a scene from it for his five minute film class project.

It’s always an authors dream to inspire someone else through their work. While I had my dream cast and dream locations, and dream everything else in my head when I wrote the book, I never thought I’d actually get to see it acted out with real people. I visited the set today and watched for about a half an hour as they fixed the lighting, rehearsed the scene, and seemed to have lots of fun doing it.

I’ll be excited to see what happens in editing and what the finished product looks like in a few weeks.

Thank you, Jeff Bienkowski, for being inspired to do this for your project and thank you to your team for having fun with it and doing such a great job so far.

Literary Cooking Adventures will return next week with a special Harry Potter-themed adventure!

Stay tuned!

~KSilva

What I’ve Been Up To!

Granite Con

So! It has been quite the busy summer! Aside from kicking it back at the wonderful New England Authors Expo in July, I also had the chance to get in on the action of New Hampshire’s Granite State Comic Con! What a joy that was! I manned (or shall I say womaned?) the New England Horror Writers table with my fellow authors Scott Goudsward, Rob Watts, Gordon Bean, and Matthew Bartlett on September 13th and 14th, a midst a sea of Harley Quinns, Arya Starks, and Starlords. I even had a run-in with one of my worst fears…one that I couldn’t have even imagined would be present: a stilted devil clown that continued to haunt me no matter which direction I looked in. I had copies of my Monstrum Chronicles series present and was promoting the upcoming 3rd book in the series, Memento Mori. I made a few sales, enjoyed getting to know my fellow writers, and checked out some of the many other vendors at the show. (I came close to getting vampire fangs. Maybe next time?)

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Inspiration Through Music: Mary Fahl

I like listening to all kinds of music when writing. It all depends on the genre, the mood of the scene, and the characters and their chemistry in that scene. Most of all, I love it when I find a musician or band with a distinctive voice, really intriguing lyrics, and a great melody. Several years ago, I was given a taste of the work from a band called October Project. I had only ever heard one of their songs but I fell in love with the lead singer’s voice within moments. Through the years, I returned to that song, listening to it for several projects here and there. Only recently, was I introduced to Mary Fahl once again, now not a part of October Project and singing some fabulous songs, sounding as amazing as ever. I even missed seeing her by several hours. HOURS. Had I known that she was in the state doing a concert, I would have booked it down there to catch it. Unfortunately, I missed it. But several of my other writer friends saw her and are as equally in awe of her talent as I am.

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Inspiration Through Music: Daughter

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.

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Inspiration Through Music: Night Time, Dotted Line

Night Time, Dotted Line

Today on a special Inspiration Through Music, I’ll be focusing on the songs that helped to inspire my newest book, Night Time, Dotted Line released today on Amazon in paperback and Kindle. This is my foray into comedy, a book that I’ve worked on for the last two years, slowly piecing together different scenes until they formed a quirky and fun tale of two strangers that decide to take an impromptu trip across the country together. Need a little more? Here’s the official synopsis:

Following a realization that his life has become monotonous after his divorce, Spencer, a lawyer, joins a free-spirited conservationist, Calleigh, on a spur-of-the-moment 3000 mile car trip to an environmental conference in Oregon. Within moments of hitting the road, Spencer’s cynical views on life immediately clash with Calleigh’s upbeat personality. Add Calleigh’s perky Pembroke Welsh Corgi and a cast of eccentric characters including a “soul-serving” diner owner and the insufferable Count Stiltsula, and soon they are in for a journey that just might drive them all crazy.

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Inspiration Through Music: Brandi Carlile

Just like driving, I have a very hard time trying to write a scene without music playing unless its a very specific scene that requires silence. In the car, I need there to be some other noise besides the rolling of tires on asphalt, the rush of air as cars pass, and the obnoxious honking of other vehicles wanting you to get out of their way. And just like when your driving, it’s good to find the right music for your mindset and the trip you’re about to take. In my current project, Night Time, Dotted Line, the entire novel is about two characters traveling from one coast of the United States to the other and the things they come across along the way. The whole novel basically takes place on the road. In my search to find good road music, I came across a song that I’d almost completely forgotten about who fits both of the characters perfectly, Brandi Carlile.

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Inspiration Through Music: Emancipator

Music projects ideas into my head in a very unique way. When I hear something, I usually am able to conjure up a mental image to accommodate the various instruments, rhythms, and harmonies that I’m listening to. Every now and again, I will listen to one particular song and when closing my eyes can completely see everything that happens in the scene behind it. I tend to be able to do this easier with instrumental music. One of my go-to instrumental bands (along with Atra Aeterna and Little People) is Emancipator. Emancipator is actually one artist, Douglas Appling, who specializes in trip-hop, which is arguably one of my favorite music genres. Although I am a huge fan of Portishead, Massive Attack, and Morcheeba, I do enjoy really getting into pieces that aren’t guided by lyrics. I prefer to have the openness of letting whatever story wants to tell itself be told. I remember being introduced to Emancipator from a song that was used in a Banff Mountain Film Festival video that we were showing a few years ago. The song was “Maps” and it changed my life. Up until that point, I hadn’t given much thought to the idea of instrumental trip hop. I’m very glad to have been introduced to Emancipator back then as its one of my principal inspirations while working on my current story, Night Time, Dotted Line. Today, I’ll be sharing five of Emancipator’s songs with you and give you an idea of what I see when I listen to them.

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Inspiration Through Music: Kings of Convenience

There are many songs that have really inspired me while working on my situational comedy novella, Night Time, Dotted Line. Most of these pieces are indie, folk, and a couple pop songs. It amazes me though that almost everyday, I hear something new that just seems to jive with everything happening in the manuscript and with the two characters. Night Time, Dotted Line is a dramedy about two characters who’ve just met one another who have agreed to go on a 3000 mile road trip across the country together. Along the way they run into several strange situations and people, but also have to contend with one another. The journey allows them to find the faults in themselves and one another and ultimately, try to heal from experiences that have been haunting them. This is a huge change from most of my other works which are much, MUCH darker. But it also allows me to listen to much more upbeat music during the darkest time of the year in Maine; winter. While working my way toward the end of the second draft, I’ve come across a wonderful band with deep lyrics but also that feel good vibe that makes fantastic road music: Kings of Convenience.

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