Readers of this blog may be familiar with paranormal romance author Tricia Schneider because she's cool enough to visit whenever she has good news to share. (She's also one of the hosts of the Very Paranormal Holidays blog hop, which you can enter here
To celebrate her newest story, she's brought us an extra special treat: a guest post about her musical muses! I rather commend her on her choice of music; she's got suburb taste. (*grin*) And it explains one of the reasons why we get along so well...
Songs, Sirens, and Story-Telling
A guest post by Tricia Schneider
I have three children ages 3, 6,
and 7. Needless to say, I have a very noisy household. My writing time has had
to become flexible over the years as I became a mother and my babies grew. Each
stage brings new challenges and rewards. But one thing has stayed the same
throughout. They are always noisy! Especially my boys. They wrestle, they chase
each other, they fight, they laugh. They don't even play hide and seek quietly.
I can hear them giggling as they try to hide. As much as it makes me crazy and
happy at the same time, the noise doesn't help my writing. It's just a
distraction. One more among many distractions for a writer to overcome.
I used to write after my noise-makers
would go to bed at night, but I didn't last long myself by that time. After a
full day, I'm usually exhausted by nightfall. I might be able to stay up and
watch a favorite TV show or two with my husband but most times I'm asleep
before the end (except with The Walking Dead
, there's no way I can fall
asleep during that show!). So, writing at night rarely works for me anymore.
Now, I write in the mornings. In
fact, I wrote The Witch's Thief
during the early morning hours. My kids
will either play or watch morning cartoons while I sit in the kitchen and
write. But, the noise still bothers me. So I wear earphones and listen to music
while I write. The music drowns out the yelling and laughter of my children
when they play, and it muffles the sound of the TV on those days they choose to
watch something with obnoxiously catchy tunes that I find myself singing for no
reason later on in the day.
I listen to a variety of music,
sometimes depending on my mood or
times depending on the scene that I'm about to write.
Here's a list of what I keep close
by for my writing days:
|Peter Steele of TON|
Type O Negative, A Perfect Circle,
Nine Inch Nails, Audioslave, David Bowie, Annie Lennox and Enya. Even though
most of these have lyrics, their voices often lull me into a kind of hypnosis
that helps me get into that writing zone that I crave each day. And the music
is usually dark and moody, very emotional stuff that spurs my creativity since
I write mainly paranormal romance with a touch of gothic mood throughout.
Movie Soundtracks and Scores are
another favorite for those days when I'm just not in the mood to listen to
The Lord of the Rings, The Pirates
of the Caribbean, Sherlock Holmes, The Last of the Mohicans, Underworld,
Resident Evil, and Bram Stoker's Dracula. More dark and moody themes that spark
emotion within me. Just listening to these songs makes me want to write!
And then I have a collection of
classical music that I enjoy listening to. Mostly it's Mozart and Bach, but I
do have several others that I sometimes find useful.
I can tell you while I wrote The
, I always started out listening to Type O Negative's
album. Black No.1
and Summer Breeze
favorite songs on that one and were guaranteed to pull me deep into my writing.
There's something very hypnotic about the singer Peter Steele's voice. It's
like he used some sort of spell to sing like a siren luring listeners into a
dark and dreamy world. Sadly, our world is darker without him. He passed away
in 2010. I have all of Type O's albums and thankfully I never get tired of
listening to them.
My husband is a bass player and
vocalist in a local band (in Pennsylvania) called Mystagen. He has a deep sexy
singing voice that I find equally hypnotic. On the album they released a few
years ago, the song Soul Steal
is my absolute favorite. Lots of emotion
in that song, too. Of course, in most cases, I used to write while listening to
them practice. No need for headphones then!
Witch's Thief is being offered
Hurry over and grab your copy!
To save her sister’s life, Julia
Grey seeks a spell hidden somewhere within Merriweather Manor. Her position as
a lady's companion affords her the freedom to search the house. But time is
running out. The necromancer she's bargained with is growing impatient. And an
unexpected appearance of a man from her past makes matters worse in an already
Basil Merriweather returns to
England after ten years abroad to discover his childhood sweetheart living in
his home. But, he's no longer the carefree man of his youth and she's hiding
something--deadly secrets Basil vows to uncover even as he hides a dark secret
of his own.
While neither Basil nor Julia will
trust in the other, their hearts speak a truer language. In a grand
attempt to save Julia's sister and Basil's life, the two must finally confess
sinister truths. Will their admissions help or hinder any future they may have
together? Or will the necromancer destroy all in a vile attempt at revenge.
He ignored her frantic questioning.
Instead, he blocked out the sound of her voice and raised his arms into the air
at his sides, his fingers splayed out as he extended his senses to scan the
area. His power eased out, like extensions of his fingertips, stretching into
the corners of the room, seeking, searching for the source of the magic he
He had sensed it earlier on his
arrival, but being that his aunt and siblings practiced magic on a regular
basis he'd never given it a second thought.
This room, however, stank with it.
He smelled the odor, something strangely like sulfur...
"A spell has been cast in this
room," he muttered. A strange spell. Odd. A spell he'd never sensed
before, something new. It felt off is some way he couldn't explain. Who would
be working new magic of this kind in his home? And, in this room in particular.
Aunt Petunia worked her spells in the privacy of her rooms upstairs, or
sometimes in the gardens, but never in this room. And his siblings each,
practiced in their own private settings, places where they could concentrate
without the threat of being disturbed. A fairly difficult task with the number
of people normally in residence at Merriweather Manor.
He took a step closer to the center
of the room where he sensed a surge of power. He shivered as coldness seeped
into his skin. It wrapped around his arm, sinking into his flesh, right down to
the bone. This was not right.
The magic in his house was always
full of warmth and gentleness. Goodness and love. This magic chilled him to the
bone. His heart skipped a beat. There was fear, terror, pain. This spell was
full of darkness.
Tricia Schneider is a paranormal
and gothic romance author. She worked as an Assistant Manager at a bookstore
for several years. Now she writes full-time while raising her 3 young children
in the coal region of Pennsylvania. For more information about her books visit: