The Soundtrack for Life

What songs are in your life's soundtrack?

What songs are in your life’s soundtrack?.

“There’s a soundtrack for Life in Spades?” People have asked when I mention certain songs that relate to the characters.  Yes, there is music mentioned throughout the book as the women work through their challenges of love and family.  And yes, there is particular music I think of in my own head when I consider Gina, Laura, Sherry, and Cookie’s stories.

While I’m working on a writing project, whether my next book or blog post, I listen to the Life in Spades “soundtrack”, as well as other music I’ve pulled up on my iPod or Slacker.  Depending on whether I’m writing, editing, re-reading, or trying to get over a stumbling block, yes, the genre changes.  Although I can write to Bruno Mars, I have to edit with instrumental in the background.

Music plays such a key piece in our lives, so it’s not surprising really that it would play a part in our creativity and productivity.  Every major life event has a song.  Birthdays, weddings, holidays.  Even births invoke certain songs – Isn’t She Lovely? – as do deaths – Precious Lord, Take My Hand.  Getting on the school bus, whistling on our way to work, going to bed after a long day.  And just as we celebrate life’s milestones with song, our memories are triggered by music, too.  What song did your mother hum to you as a kid?  Where were you when the Thriller video premiered? (And if you are not old enough to have that as a living, specific memory, well, just keep that to yourself.)  What was your first music concert?  What grade, who were your friends?

It was a source of entertainment to consider what music Gina, Laura, Sherry, and Cookie would be listening to as they got together for a game of spades, went out for happy hour, and swept across the dance floor.  It also gave my brain another creative puzzle to figure out.

Sam Cooke crooning “You’re nobody unless somebody loves you,” spoke to Laura’s feelings as she struggles with her feelings about being a professional escort and what that meant for her personal life.  Later, Porgy & Bess illustrated the universal choice of choosing the man who loves you versus the one who can provide things that you think you want.  Cookie’s heart recognizes that love may be lost, but there are second chances and that’s okay, as David sings to her from the music festival stage.  As Sherry gulps a drink, sure that all she wants is to dance with somebody, we wonder, “Where Do Broken Hearts Go?”  And what is playing on Gina’s iPod as she runs behind Alex. Is life really, so simply “Black & White”?

Music in our own lives is fun, it’s memories, it’s a time marker.  In Life In Spades, it serves as mood and texture for who the women are.  As the author, it kept me humming along as they bopped and shimmied along onto the page.  I hope my readers feel like tapping their feet along to their story, too.

 

Share in the Comments – What songs mark important moments in your life?

Throwing a Spades Party

Enjoying my Spades Night & Book Launch

Enjoying my Spades Night & Book Launch

You can’t have a book titled “Life in Spades” without actually playing spades at some point.  With about 50 friends and associates, we held our first event, a Spades Night & Book Launch on May 21.  Yes, on a Tuesday night, of all days of the week.  Why?  Of course because that’s when Gina, Sherry, Laura, and Cookie play spades.  And, in keeping with their tradition, we had delicious munchies – crabcakes, pork sliders, egg rolls, and a full cheese platter – and plenty of drinks.  With brand new decks of cards, we got down to the spades games, folks pairing off with friends and new friends.  We had guys vs. gals, and couple vs. friends.  All in all, I think everyone had a great time.  So much so, that several guests mentioned that I need to have another one soon.

To throw your own spades party, here’s a few simple suggestions.

  • Have plenty of drinks and easy to grab with one hand munchies
  • Divide up the “experts” and the “novices” to help keep the peace as much as possible (you know these things can get a little heated sometime)
  • Have a winning score (200 for a shorter game, 500 for longer) and a maximum time to play
  • Offer a fun prize.  We had Sangria drink mix, crystal ice buckets, shot glasses, and gift certificates to cater a party from Savory Gourmet on the table for the winners.
  • Provide the rules of the night – everyone plays spades slightly differently (nil bids, blind bids, overbidding are all up for negotiation), this will make sure everyone is in agreement as to what’s allowed

And do you need to be reminded to have fun?  Enjoy!