I admit it: I'm jealous of all writers who can slap on headphones, plug into some tunes and keep on writing. Laurell K. Hamilton is always blogging about what music is getting her through a book, (usually heavy rock, but she switches to musicals and Xmas music when the writing gets tough.) At the end of Heat Stroke, Rachel Cain included a list of music she listened to while writing that book. Robin D. Owens puts together Celtic-inspiredsoundtracks for writing her fantasy novels. I don't. I can't. I've tried. Though I love all kinds of music, I just can't listen and write at the same time. Compiling stacks of albums and queueing the songs takes too much time, but the real problem is that the music interferes with immersion in the scene. Sometimes it's the words from the songs, sometimes it's the pictures and emotions evoked by the song. It's too bad really. Sometimes I feel there are songs that really capture the heart of a scene, or resonate with a certain character, and could add to the writing, but as soon as I start listening, my eyes glaze over, I start to visualize what the video should look like, and the flow of words to that scene is gone. Classical music can work, but it has to be pieces I don't know. Gregorian chant is too sleepy. Foreign languages are distracting. I work best in silence, but I can write when the television is on. I have an easier time blocking it out, probably because it's a visual medium, and the sound doesn't make sense without the pictures to go with it.