Lightbulb Moments

Paloma Faith. Bournemouth June 2013

Laura: One of our recent group blogs focused on which songs assist us when writing hot scenes.

As I was adding my humble offering, I was reminded of songs that have helped me solve plot problems, and wondered what other inspirational moments have happened that moved your writing on.

Now, this is a little tricky, as I can’t give away the plot that Paloma Faith solved for me, as it is part of the final scenes in Truth or Dare?, but as a huge fan of the brilliant lyricist, singer and performer (can you tell I’m a little obsessed?), I listen to Paloma’s albums with teenage regularity. It was as I was listening to Black and Blue, from Fall To Grace, that the plot issue was solved. I wonder if you’ll work out which line it was…

In my current novel, Follow Me, I was in the car when Money, The Flying Lizzards played on the radio. The line about the best things in life being free leapt out at me, and suddenly, I had a believable solution to a plot problem I’d been trying to resolve for a couple of months.

This must happen to writers everywhere, not just with music, but maybe your neighbour said something, or your child brought a picture home from school that made you think, ‘That’s the answer!’

We’d love to hear about your lightbulb moments. What or who flicked that switch?

Laura x

10 thoughts on “Lightbulb Moments

  1. I am often inspired to write by instumental music, but every so often a lyric will lodge in my mind, flutter around like a trapped moth and then settle down to inspire me with a single line. Robbie Williams’ ‘She breathes flesh to my bones’ (Angels) kept me determined to complete my (then) WIP and Globus’s line ‘And the spark that lives in the heart of everyone shall become like a flame, like the sun’ (Illumination) gave me the major story arc for my ‘Angels of York’ series.
    I’ve complied a full list of my inspiring music at;

  2. A fab post, Laura and one that really got me thinking. It’s hard when your mind is a ragbag of stray one-liners and threads of music, isn’t it? Difficult to pin down what came from where and the temptation to quote/accidentally steal is a problem. I love lots of Beatles music for the words, and the Eurythmics, and Fleetwood Mac for the same reason. The Who’s ‘Sea and Sand’ is one of my all-time inspirational songs, and John Martyn’s ‘May You Never’ too. And Four Seasons In One Day – Crowded House is a story in itself.

    • I’m a huge Eurythmics and FM fan 🙂 I think Paloma might give me the inspiration I require for book 3. Laura xx

  3. I don’t know if any lyrics have solved my plot problems, but I find a lot of them fit in really nicely. I quite often jot lyrics down for inspiration at a later date.


    • Yes – I sometimes hear a line and think I could base a story around that 🙂 Laura xx

  4. Mine’s not specific to a story. A few (… make that Many) years ago, I was trying really hard to write a grown up serious sort of novel. It was going okay. Then one day I read ‘The Boy Next Door’ by Meg Cabot, which is written almost entirely in emails and I had my lightbulb moment. This was exactly the thing I needed!
    I wrote Patently in Love (with the hero’s POV entirely in emails) soon after and I had a blast writing it.

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