When You Absolutely Have to Write a Song – Guest Blog

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Amy Lane who is celebrating the recent release of Paint It Black, the second book in the Behind the Stain series.

When You Absolutely Have to Write a Song

So, by the terms of acceptable use policy, we’re not allowed to copy song lyrics down for our stories. The exceptions are for titles and chapter titles (hence all the chapter titles in Beneath the Stain) and a few words of chorus (so “Jeremy spoke in class today,” for Talker’s Redemption.)

And that’s good—we don’t want to steal from other authors, and pretty much our entire community believes in giving credit where credit is due.

But it’s also hard, because if I want the perfect song to express my characters’ feelings in a rock and roll epic romance, I have to go write my own.

I have nothing against writing poetry—as an angsty teen, I wrote lots. Much of it was about unicorns—1-2-3 CRINGE! The first short story I wrote was an epic poem, in doggerel.

My shame, it still burns.

When I applied to the creative writing program I made up two poems to put in the poetry section, and cringed, hoping for the best. I got accepted into the MA for fiction, but not for poetry, and I was relieved.

Oh dear God, let me not be responsible for poetry.

But with Beneath the Stain, I was writing rock stars. I had to write lyrics—I had to write them. The story wouldn’t make sense without them. I’d wrote them for Mackey, taking a special effort to make the first lyric a little juvenile, a little junky, because Mackey was seventeen when he wrote that and I remembered my first forays into poetry. But after that, I had to pony up.

I’ve read lyrics, repeatedly, and some of them look like regular poetry—Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie, Kate Bush, Damien Jurado, Matty Schulz can tell some serious stories with their lyrics. The rawer, more visceral songs still tell a story—but sometimes it’s a very simple one. There is lots of repetition, lots of places where the music covers the rhythm and the rhyme is shot to hell for much the same reason. One of my favorite songs, “Shelter”, by the Rolling Stones, has lines and lines of lyrics that read “oooh-oooh-oooh” and “It’s just a shout away”. “Louis-Louis” by the Kingston Trio is really a bunch of drunk guys singing about how it’s time to go. The music and the delivery make those songs—the lyrics are the least important part.

I didn’t have a band to back me up, so I had to depend on the words. I did my best.

Some good soul on GoodReads was adamant that it was not good enough. Several lovely people have been kind enough to tell me that the songs helped make the book.

When I had to do the same thing in Paint it Black, I’d given myself a slightly cushier setup, if I say so myself.

For one thing, Blake and Cheever had college degrees–they got to write slightly more sophisticated lyrics than Mackey did at seventeen. For another, I’d made it plain that Blake’s style was a little more acoustic, a little less hard-core rock-show. That meant that the lyrics could be longer, and they could be less music intensive—we were getting into James Taylor/Carole King/Bob Dylan territory here, and, well, more words works for me.

Here viagra side effects appalachianmagazine.com is a simple explanation of both of drugs that will surely help you to make your sexual intercourse last longer and satisfied. The loss of erectile capacity can lead to a profound effect order cialis pills on a man’s ability to perform sexually. super levitra Penile Exercise Penile exercises help increase blood supply to the tissues. The probes one uses should have a rounded tip and a cheap buy viagra smooth surface such as a dildo, drumstick or specialized prostate massage probes. And Cheever was an artist—his poetry was going to be very visual, and very metaphorical, and baby we were on a roll now.

Sort of. I was still a reluctant poet, I admit. One of the songs that Blake wrote for his first solo album was about his unrequited crush on his best friend—and it’s referenced often. I’ll never forget my reaction to the editor’s note on the side.

“Can we see the lyrics to this song so we know what it says?”

I looked at that note and thought of the other lyrics I’d written, and how uncomfortable I was writing poetry for an audience (now that I knew how bad it had been when I was a kid), and sobbed, “Nooooooooooo!”

But it’s in there—I wrote it, because she was right. It needed to be.

But it wasn’t easy. Give me a sex scene any day.

My only hope is that the poetry was sexy and added to the book. Because if I ever get another note in my edit that says, “Hey, you have to write a poem to prompt here—GO!” I might write an entire song that looks like, “Nooooo-oooooooooo-oooooooooooo….”

Everybody thinks Mackey Sanders’s Outbreak Monkey is the last coming of Rock ’n’ Roll Jesus, but Cheever Sanders can’t wait to make a name for himself where nobody expects him to fill his famous brothers’ shoes. He’s tired of living in their shadow.

Blake Manning has been one of Outbreak Monkey’s lead guitarists for ten years. He got this gig on luck and love, not talent. So hearing that Cheever is blowing through Outbreak Monkey’s hard-earned money in an epic stretch of partying pisses him off.

Blake shows up at Cheever’s nonstop orgy to enforce some rules, but instead of a jaded punk, he finds a lost boy as talented at painting as Mackey is at song-making, and terrified to let anybody see the real him. Childhood abuse and a suicide attempt left Cheever on the edge of survival—a place Blake knows all too well.

Both men have to make peace with being second banana in the public eye. Can they find the magic of coming absolute first with each other?

About the Author: Amy Lane lives in a crumbling crapmansion with a couple of growing children, a passel of furbabies, and a bemused spouse. She’s been nominated for a RITA twice, has won honorable mention for an Indiefab, and has a couple of Rainbow Awards to her name. She also has too damned much yarn, a penchant for action-adventure movies, and a need to know that somewhere in all the pain is a story of Wuv, Twu Wuv, which she continues to believe in to this day! She writes fantasy, urban fantasy, and gay romance–and if you accidentally make eye contact, she’ll bore you to tears with why those three genres go together. She’ll also tell you that sacrifices, large and small, are worth the urge to write.

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