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How Music Fuels My Writing

Writing Book Inspiration Tips Music

One thing that inspires my writing above anything else is music.  Not only do I need the right music playing while I write, songs have actually inspired entire book plots and scenes.

For example, the Memory of Trees album by Enya inspired an entire plot of events for a book.

Typically I acquire inspiration from random things such as ancient stories, a twist on an existing story (I think about the what ifs of a scenario), a person I’ve met, a life event, or a dream. Then there are other times that I am begging my mind to muster up an idea.

When an idea hits me, it hits really hard.

No matter how ideas come to me, they all share a common factor.

I need to be listening to the right songs to keep the fuel going for the story.

The right music is like the soundtrack to my stories.  I even set up specific playlists and name them after the stories I am working on.

I have a hard time writing in the dead silence.  I do know a few authors that say they write in complete silence or with some form of white noise. I am not one of them. Typically, though, I cannot write to songs with lyrics. There are exceptions to this rule, however.

Here’s a handful of songs I listen to while I write.

Current Children’s Book I’m Writing:

A Vampire Book I Never Finished (perhaps someday):

Fantasy Novel:

This is just a very small list of what I listen to while I am writing.  Sometimes to fit the mood of a scene I will skip around to certain songs just so that I am in the right mindset for it.

I need music.

Music fuels my writing.

And, to fully immerse myself in the music I have to wear my earmuff headphones.  Even if everything is quiet in my home, there’s something about wearing headphones that keeps me focused.

What songs do you listen to while writing?  Has a song ever inspired a story idea?


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Baby Book Art Reveal

Wenzel Baby Newborn Book Illustration Watercolor


In a previous post I mentioned that I was working on a baby book.

This is still true, and I’m thrilled to finally be able to reveal a couple of pages of art.

The book is being illustrated by Minneapolis based costume designer and artist, Stacey Palmer I’m also very fortunate to be able to call her my sister.

The book was originally illustrated by me 13 years ago, but I never was happy with the artwork.  Though I too am an artist, I work more with vector and pixel art.  I saw something very special in Stacey’s watercolor art style that perfectly matches the feel to this book.

All of the art is made by watercolor on an 11×17 sheet.  Once the painting is complete, I scan the image and do some color correcting for reprinting.  Some color is lost when it’s scanned, so I have been going in on a paint program I own with watercolor brushes to touch up the images.

Wenzel Baby Newborn Book Illustration Bunny Watercolor

The original watercolor artwork is about half done. In total the book is 26 pages.  Once the watercolor pages are complete I will finish the color enhancing and then format the text and images into a book.  Ultimately I want this book to be a board book, but at this time I only have the resources for softcover, eBook, and possibly hardcover.

So there you have it!  I am very happy with how the book is coming along and can’t wait to share the rest of you.

Feel free to contact me to inquire more about this baby book, or visit Stacey Palmer‘s design portfolio.