Ashes And Wine
June 28, 2012
Before Tessa met Royal Andreas, her bookstore was on the verge of sinking. And before Tessa met Royal Andreas, she didn’t mind being single. But Royal brings in business with monthly wine tastings featuring his family’s signature vintages–and brings Tessa’s heart to a standstill with intense gray eyes that look on her with nothing but cool indifference.
Yet one searing kiss between the stacks gives Tessa a glimpse of the passion smoldering beneath–and a secret pain further revealed when Royal fills in as the musician at a tasting event. Every note of Spanish guitar tells a story of family tragedy, loss, and ongoing suffering that’s made Royal afraid to lean on anyone…even if he needs Tessa’s sweet flavor more than the richest wine. Only her strength can save him when his world crumbles to ashes. But has Royal learned trust too late to claim Tessa as his own?
Music means the world to me and it has a staring role in ASHES AND WINE. As important as the winery and the bookstore is to the story, I think music is the very soul of this novella. Because Royal Andreas, the main love interest in the story, is so locked up emotionally, his music is the only way he can communicate with people. I use it as a tool to bring his character out of his shell. First for Tessa’s benefit, and later as a healing element to the end of the story.
Some authors write in silence, some write to movie soundtracks, heck…I know people that write to Italian operas. Me? I need different songs for every story. Sometimes the soundtrack overlaps with a few tracks, but for the most part I love to build a playlist that suits each couple’s journey through their story. Sometimes it takes a while to figure out the right music, but sometimes I nail it the very first time.
Here’s ASHES AND WINE’s official playlist.
I’m a huge fan of Spotify. They allow you to embed songs into your website if you want to spice up a post, but they also allow you unlimited playlists both on your phone and computer as well as your tablet. Me, I have an iPad. Spotify is going all the damn time. Music is as essential as food for me. It’s food for my breain and my heart.
A few of my favorites from the ASHES soundtrack are:
Florence + The Machine’s Never Let Me Go:
Dierks Bently’s Breathe Me In
Matt Nathanson’s Run
All of them have a slow build that shows a growing passion. It’s an underlying theme in the story as well. It took Royal three years to get his act together when it comes to Tessa. He’s been burying his emotions for so long that when he finally has to face them, they really tear him up inside.
I think the use of music when I’m writing helps to solidify the scene in my head. Sometimes I have to break the playlist into separate sub-lists. When I’m writing a romantic scene, sometimes I need the softer and sweeter. When I’m writing a fight scene, I don’t want a slow bluesy ballad…I want Drowning Pool or Godsmack. And when I’m breaking someone’s heart, I want a song that gets me worked up, like Exit Wounds from The Script.
But when I write a love scene…that’s the most important song ever. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with Sia’s Breath Me.
It really sets the tone in a love scene. The highs and the lows of the emotion, the overall flow, and even the inevitable climax. I’ll listen to a single song 8-10 times in a row while I’m writing the scene just to keep the mood right.
Lately I’ve been using Movie Soundtracks when I need that visceral impact. Inception and Girl With a Dragon Tattoo have songs that can really ratchet up the internal tension inside me and sometimes when I’m blocked in a scene I know that the music isn’t quite right for what I’m writing. I guess you could say music is my muse for lack of a better definition.
So…I think I babbled enough about music. Do you care if a book has a soundtrack? Does it ruin the experience or heighten it to know about where the author’s head is at when they’re writing a book? Let me know! I’d love to talk about it with you.
About the Author:
Nora Roberts is the reason I’m an author. I’ve loved books all my life, but the first time I found Nora I was hooked. I scoured the internet to find everything I could. (believe me, back then…it wasn’t so easy to find.) When I ran out of books from her I decided to try my hand at writing my own. I’m also a television addict. Get Glue gets a lot of love from me these days. Finding people that love the same kind of TV shows that I do is my weakness. I love talking about characters. I’m a total shipper. SURPRISE right? Romance author in love with rooting for couples on television? Spotify is my other addiction. I write to music and love to make up playlists for each and every book. Pinterest is evil, and the best visual aid for a writer out there. Getting a hint that the internet is my life? Yep. It so is. If you want to find all my dirty little secrets feel free to visit me on my website.