Do you regularly free write? Do you wish you did? Several times a month, we’ll post a writing prompt. Open a notebook or a blank page and keep your hand moving for 10 minutes. Don’t worry about grammar or punctuation – just write.
I slam the car door shut and the minivan shudders a bit. I pull the sleeves of my fleece over my hands for warmth and turn the key. Slowly the car comes to life, straining against the bitter cold of a Northeast Friday in mid-February.
Music floods the space.
Angel by Shaggy streams through the speakers, and I’m instantly transported to a cramped college dorm room. Several of us studious types crowd around the lone common room mirror, experimenting with mascara before an evening out. A moody melody like Piano Man takes me back further still to the rear of a school bus on a seventh grade field trip, Walkman in hand, mix tape securely lodged within. My thumb never left the rewind button, I loved the Billy Joel ballad so.
These days, when I’m shuttling my kids around in that minivan, there is something about a catchy tune that quells a sibling spat and allows us all to come together in song and silliness.
It must be silent when I write. No soundtrack eases that process. But when I’m stuck, I set out for a drive and crank the radio at full blast. The steady, soothing movement of the car as it hurtles through the wide world merges with music-evoked memory. On the open road, my mind is free of the earthly trappings of the everyday and hovers somewhere in the ether. In a rush, a full paragraph of prose takes shape. It is there that the perfect turn of phrase always finds me.
In today’s free write, explore the emotion elicited by a particular song, or a memory conjured while listening to music on the road. Do you listen to music while you write? While on the road? How does music affect you?
Do YOU have a writing prompt to share with Literary Mama readers? Send your 150- to 300-word narrative and associated writing prompt to lmblogcontact (at) literarymama (dot) com. We’d love to read your ideas!