What Hobbies Writers Have

Today I was making some solid perfume.

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My very own, mixed with exactly what I want it to smell like, perfume.  Good ingredients perfume.  Vegan perfume! This is a new hobby for me, but it got me to thinking about what other writers do in their hobby time.

The vegan part is inspired by my older daughter, who has her own vegan world of things going on.   Visit her at SupernaturaleGirl.

Making a perfume for myself – with strong notes of vanilla and sandalwood and lighter notes of lavender and bergamot – it got me to thinking what the characters in my book might smell like.  I may be interested in brewing up some perfume with August and Faolan in mind.  It would be pretty cool to think of my characters with that level of dimension.  I have also considered making a few props, since I love to make props!

So, what is your hobby?

Shenanigans in Publishing

I keep up with what’s going on in the self-publishing market, for obvious reasons (oy, with the research, can’t a girl just write something?) and I wanted to share THIS ARTICLE just because it’s the strangest article I’ve ever read.  At first I thought it was a satire article – in part because photo looks so staged and in part because…just…so.many.things.

Even as I’m about to post this, I double-checked to make sure it wasn’t the plot of a weekly evening soap opera.  An interesting read even if you aren’t in the book world.  But especially if you’re in the romance and erotica book world.  And also, anybody who follows Amazon and their shenanigans.

Can’t we all just play nice?

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Heartstrings

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Do you ever find yourself on the cusp of a feeling and you try to use music to intensify that feeling?

Maybe it’s somewhat silly to even post because people use music to evoke feeling all the time.  For weddings, you’ll find love songs and joyful tunes.  If you’re angry and want to rage against the machine you can, well, listen to Rage Against the Machine.  Of course there is the ever-popular post breakup wallow.

But I’m not really talking about those sorts of things.  I’m talking about finding a feeling.  You feel something welling up in you, but you aren’t certain what it is.  Is it that you’re about to be sad?  Or maybe you’re just feeling particularly loving?

I have restless music days.  Days where I change the channel on Spotify or switch to Songza or Pandora, searching.  What melody, what lyrics, what genre is going to vibrate the correct heartstrings?  It’s like having one of those itches that you scratch, but it moves.  You keep chasing it, but you still have the sensation of the itch, just beneath your skin.

When I find the right music the restlessness settles.  My soul tunes in and I tend to get stuck on it for days.  Looping a limited playlist or even listening to the same song several times in one day.  Sometimes in a row.  The itch is scratched and I use the feelings to make something.

Song List for Writing Werewolves

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Today I am writing on the second book of the Red August series and behind me, my lover is editing the first book. It’s nice when he’s here I can work at my desk writing, and he can sit behind me at the table, writing.

We have officially reached workaholic status, though.  All day yesterday I was making artwork for my store website (which is set to launch May1).  Last week I split my time between writing, making items for my online store and making a Cafepress shop.  Which is still very much NOT DONE.  But off to a good little start.

Anyway, at first I was playing a music list with no lyrics.  Then I ended up putting on my Fairytale Writing Mix – Red August which is on Spotify.  You can follow it, if you like and you use Spotify – I am under “Heather Brooks.”

I take several approaches to listening to music while writing.  If I’m in an easily distracted mood I will put on instrumentals.  I have a list that is almost all instrumental called Myth, Magic, Faeries & Mermaids.  I may even just listen to coffee shop sounds on Coffitivity.  Other times I like having some music with lyrics happening – and usually it’s because I want something that gives me the atmosphere of what I’m writing.  In the case of Red August I made a list that has a lot of sexy, ethereal stuff on it.  Also, since the book is set in the early 1980s, I listened to some of the stuff around then.  Retrojam is good for that.

So, here are probably my top five favorites (in no particular order) from my Fairytale Writing Mix – Red August:

HowlFlorence + The Machine
Exiles (The Wolves of Midwinter) – Mary FahlBorn to DieLana Del Rey
Ride – Lana Del Rey
My ImmortalEvanescence

If you have suggestions for good songs that fit the haunted, werewolf, wolf, hunter, huntress, archery theme, please leave me a comment!