Founder Post: The Music that Inspired My Latest Novel, The Song in the Shadows
If you’ve followed me for any amount of time, you know that music plays an important role in my writing process. Even when my fingers aren’t on the keyboard, I’m listening to songs that remind me of moments in my books, characters, story arcs, and even emotions I experience writing certain scenes. Listening to these songs helped me to develop the story in my mind long before it ever hits the page.
The Song in the Shadows was no exception to this process. So many of the songs on this playlist have become some of my all-time favorite songs, speaking so powerfully to my soul that it’s difficult to put into words.
But I’ll try.
Lo and behold, I present to you: the playlist I had on repeat while writing The Song in the Shadows. Enjoy!
Lost Myself – Syml
I don’t even know where to begin with this song. When it hit as a single, I couldn’t believe how close it hit home. It’s Miri’s song, hands down. It captures that longing for the thing you’re not brave enough to go after. It tells the story of someone just trying to understand love. If that’s not Miri’s song, I’m not sure what is. (And yes, you’ll find this playlist only further solidified my obsession with Syml, but I digress.)
Breaking through the clouds feels impossible now // breaking through the clouds feels impossible now // I think I lost myself // yeah, I lost myself
The Dark – Syml
Again, Syml coming in with lyrics that just gut me. This song. It’s so painfully beautiful — a man learning that his love is his salvation. I think of Ezra every time I hear this one, and I have openly wept several times it pops up on the playlist.
My fire is starved of oxygen / a flicker in the howling wind / beware the night is closing in / and if I fall asleep, the shadows win
I Won’t Let You Go – James Morrison
Aside from the fact that James Morrison is nearly perfect as an artist, this song in particular just strikes a chord with me. I think it’s partially the ’60s vibes and partly the fact that it’s just a song about devotion. I love songs about sticking it out with someone. That’s ENTIRELY the theme of every book I write. So of course, I’m drawn to songs with the same theme.
When it’s black / take a little time to hold yourself / take a little time to feel around / before it’s gone
Child at Heart – Hanson
I’ve had a biding obsession for Hanson since 1997, I won’t lie. But their latest album RGB is just another example of why they are one of the most underrated bands of the 21st century. This song is no exception. I suppose this one made the book playlist because of that very first line. A message to Miri. A message to Ezra. Even a message to Rachæl and Gian.
You can just breathe / You are no mistake / Though you’re feeling strange / Just give your heart away / Like you’re not afraid / To face another day / Though you’re feeling far / You can chase a star / Like a child at heart
Love Like This – Lauren Daigle
Hands down, this song is the very last scene with Rachæl and Gian. I love the tension in it–especially how Gian is humbly trying so hard to make her see the truth in front of her. I absolutely adore that moment in their arc. And this song is its soundtrack.
When I am a wasteland / You are the water / When I am the winter / You are the fire that burns / When I am a long night / You are the sunrise / When I am a desert / You are the river that turns / To find me
Want to hear the whole playlist? Listen to all 37 songs on your favorite streaming platform!
I'm a chronic over-achiever and avid binger of The Office. When I watch Lord of the Rings, I watch the extended versions, and they're still not long enough. I won arguments in elementary school by out-quoting everyone with my vast knowledge of The Princess Bride. So yeah, I'm kind of a big deal.