My self-publishing journey: Writing your novel with a song in your head
If your novel had a soundtrack, what would it be?
Will it be a moving song of joy and pleasure or a powerful anthem filled with anger, pain, and grief?
Or will there be total absence of music and beats and rhythms in your story, only strings of narratives, dialogues, and monologues from thousands of texts trying their best to translate your thoughts into words to get your captivated readers hooked, engaged, and craving for more?
There are many ways to write a story and writers have different ways of completing their manuscripts.
My way as a first time novelist was a process involving an outdated CD player and a Spotify stream of nearly endless music.
When I started writing my novel five years ago, I had songs playing in my head like a soundtrack of sorts and they guided me in shaping my characters and plots chapter after chapter until I reached and finished the Epilogue.
“Fobolous” reads like a movie.
That’s what most of my readers said after reading the novel. They said the story would be a perfect plot for a film in the category of romantic comedies the way the story was written.
For someone who toiled in college to pass production classes involving a host of scripts and matching background music, my mind was trained to spot the perfect music for a specific plot and vice versa depending on which came first, the idea or the song.
Without the songs to carry me through, I may not have been able to finish “Foboous” and create the many issues within the plots and the few twists within my individual characters’ lives that were resolved one by one as their respective stories culminated in the last pages of the book.
Here's a favorite one of mine.
If you’ve already read “Fobolous”, this next song may have been playing in your head too when Janelle and James, the main characters of the book, saw each other for the first time in a tea house after a significant event took place in the previous chapter.
It’s the perfect song for that chapter, it seems except you be the judge on who was singing that song in his or her head. Was it the cool but slightly smitten Asian American architect or the witty but funny and slightly smitten self-proclaimed cosmo chick that just set foot in America?
Needless to say, I had fun writing “Fobolous” as much as picking the songs for every chapter of the book, all 60 of them, some of which are featured on my website.
Check out my website here.
If one day, my book becomes a rom-com film (a girl can dream, right?), I’ll have my very own soundtrack ready to hand to the producers. If they toss it in the trash, that won’t be a big deal because my version is safely tucked in the chapters of my book as etched in my memory as the goofy novelist.
What’s even better?
Every reader of my book will have their own personal soundtrack of "Fobolous".
Because that’s the beauty of reading a novel.
Every reader creates their own personal film version of the book as it plays in their imagination.
Check out my novel “Fobolous”.
If you’ve already read “Fobolous”, please put your songs in the comments section below and let’s compare notes.
Rainne Mendoza. 2016
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