Music vs. Fiction: Music Always Wins #amwriting #songwriting

January has just begun and already I’m in trouble. Choosing to focus on writing and music, I realize I must designate one as the priority because both of them take enormous skill and time and focus to succeed. Sure, I can pursue both, but I must choose which will be number one in my life. I keep returning to this truth for me.

Music always wins. And now I have a separate designated studio in my home, which is great because then the cats can’t chew the wires. 🙂

But songwriting still counts as writing, right? Will that be enough or will I have to fit in fiction, too? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Besides, I can always write fiction during breaks from music because you always need breaks, right? But there are just so many pieces to a song, including vocal warmups, as Shelly Peiken writes about in her latest blog post here.


Ode to Cecilia (#poem)

Stories of California Missions and Father Junipero Serra
Disneyland fireworks from our childhood era
Beach Boys and Beatles and Screamie Birds groupies
Cecilia and I sang “Hang on Sloopy”

From “sexy scientist” to Las Vegas beautician
She called herself “CeeCee” following her ambition
Sitting next to Alan at the sixth grade spelling bee
On stage I saw green but he was mine, she reassured me

“Cecilia, you’re breaking my heart”
Paul Simon sang years later and many miles apart
About a Patroness for poets, novelists, and musicians
Discovering decades later, it was a year after my audition

Hiding in plain sight God touched my soul
He sent priests and musicians and witnesses and moles
Pursuing me relentlessly for as long as it took
Saint Cecilia leading me to sing and write the book

#Blogtoberfest Day 23: Why I Won’t Be Doing #NaNoWriMo

As hard as I’ve tried to get back into writing fiction – taking a class from the Las Vegas chapter of RWA and reading No Plot, No Problem – to motivate myself to join NaNoWriMo for the month of November, I just can’t do it. I’m too far gone when it comes to music these days and I’m dreaming of upgrading my studio.

(Photo: iPhone snap from Sweeetwater Ad in Electronic Musician magazine)

Lush Women Sing the Blues

Chiron of Chiron Radio had a fabulous post this week featuring Imelda May and other amazing “new to me” lush women who sing the blues. And this led me off on my own search of new female singers on Pandora, which I discovered while creating an “Imelda May” station. Wow! What an incredible find! But before I share some of those with you, check out what Chiron said about Lucky in my latest romance novel, The Tom Jones Club:

One of my buddies, Kathy Holmes, shares my hunger for lush tunes. Her most recent book, The Tom Jones Club, features a cabaret singer which reminded me of Jeff Beck’s recent collaboration with Imelda May. To finish up our show, I have cued up a recent video of one of my very favorite guitar heroes and the delicious Imelda, with a song guaranteed to give you chills.

Imelda May – Walking in the Sand:

This definitely gives me the chills and speaks to my own blues singing soul, something I’d thought was my first love. But life has taught me that, instead of performing on a real live stage, I perform vicariously through the characters in my novels. No wonder so many of them are wannabe performers.

Here’s another one from Imelda May – Big Bad Handsome Man:

This led me to discovering The Mother Truckers – name alone cracks me up, and the title, oh yeah!

The Mother Truckers – Love Me Like a Man:

Here are some other fabulously lush women singers I discovered Saturday night:

Devil Doll – The One Who Got Away:

Eilen Jewel – Sea of Tears:

Missy Higgins – This is How it Goes:

Mink Stole – Sometimes I Wish I Had a Gun:

Ingrid Lucia – Sunny Afternoon:

Kim Lenz – He’s All Mine:

Gina Sicilia – Don’t Wanna be no Mother; Don’t Wanna Be no Wife:

And one more cuz I scared myself writing my suspense manuscript:
Katie Melua – Scary Films:

A huge thanks to Chiron for introducing me to this fabulous music and for the mention of Lucky and The Tom Jones Club. I hope you’ve all discovered something new, as well.

PS – I think this post inspired me to write the sequel to Real Women Wear Red called Real Women Sing the Blues. It may also be responsible for my songwriting/blues studies, too.