A MUSICAL SCORE
Read the very first page and focus on the music of the words themselves. Do they sway and swirl like
saxophones or violins? Are they sharp and staccato like piano or bass or
languid and sultry like a feminine voice or a clarinet?
Getting the tone balanced is essential. Stretch your
imagination. Don't be afraid to stray from your favorites and venture into
unknown musical realms. A few styles instantly bring to mind certain
musicians or composers for us.
Light and airy - Mozart or Enya
Heavy and thoughtful - Beethoven or Sarah McLachlan
Spirited and lively - Vivaldi or Cher
Romantic and sweeping - Chopin or Diana Krall
Look to the publisher's synopsis on the book to find the story's time period and
location. Classical pieces can work
with any novel, but fitting contemporary music into historical novels
can be tricky.
Donít overlook the obvious. For instance, Spanish guitar works exquisitely with novels
set in Spain, Latin or South America. Jazz is a great place to start for
American novels about the Roaring 20s. It doesnít have to be difficult to be
THE PERFECT SIP
Balance is also an important key to
selecting your tea. A robust story or strong heroine fares better
against a strong black tea than a delicate white tea. Green teas
often provide a lovely middle ground and offer wonderful health
benefits as well. The location of the novel will also help you make
a good choice, for instance tropical fruit flavors suit tropical
locales. Reading about Great Britain? British Breakfast Tea,
of course! Also consider the characters as an interesting nuance.
Perhaps the main character is old and wise, a savory herbal tea may
compliment the story more than a sweet fruit flavored tea.
AN EXTRAORDINARY READING EXPERIENCE
Once you've made your choices, listen
to the CD all the way through before you venture into your novel.
As you read, change the track if you recall one that seems
particularly appropriate. Youíll find you can easily listen to a
movement or song two or even three times in a row because it isn't
the focus of your attention. If the music overwhelms your reading,
enjoy it in between reading times instead to set the stage for your
return. Curl up in your favorite chair and feel the music as it
swirls around the room. Inhale the wonderful aroma of the steam
rising from your cup of tea and savor the first sip. It's time to
open the book and begin your journey.
Copyright Elizabeth Barnes ?2005