every book has a theme song

I’m hesitant to prescribe a contemporary song to a historical novel, but the fact is that both of my books have theme songs. While I listened to more era/mood appropriate music while writing, I’ve already mentioned that “Sympathy for the Devil” by the Rolling Stones was definitely my theme for The Blood Confession.

I was inspired to write this post when the theme song for The King’s Rose snuck up on me earlier today: “The Other Side” by David Gray. It may seem an odd choice, but take a look at some of these lyrics and imagine it from Catherine to Henry:

Maybe I oughta mention
Was never my intention
To harm you or your kin
Are you so scared to look within
The ghosts are crawling on our skin
We may race and we may run
Well not undo what has been done
Or change the moment when its gone…

Something about the tone of this song always made me think of the end of the book. As much as The Mediaeval Baebes were my muse throughout the writing process, this is the song you should listen to once you’ve finished the book. I’ve found a live (and sort of long) version for you on youtube.com:

As for my current work in progress, I don’t think it has a theme song yet. But there are certainly a range of things that I listen to when I’m writing it or trying to get into the mode of writing. I was suffering some serious writer’s block when I started this book, so sitting down at the computer often became an uncomfortable experience. So instead of worrying about choosing music that would make me think about my character or the time period, I just put on music that I love, that makes me happy. And that, my friends, equates to David Bowie.

David Bowie close up

Published in: on September 5, 2009 at 8:10 pm  Comments (2)  

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  1. On the Henry-Catherine theme:
    I was in Oxford for a few days this last week while my mum was at a conference, and I got a t-shirt from the shop at Christ Church College which has a picture of Henry VIII on the front and on the back lists all the wives with years of birth, marriage, how the wedding ended, and when they died (for Anne of Cleves and Catherine Parr). Thought you might appreciate that, although my mother just informed me that I had a strange sense of humor.

    • Ha! I love this, it sounds like the type of t-shirt you get at a concert. King Henry VIII: The Marital Tour.

      I hope you enjoyed Oxford!

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