The cover of the Commitments soundtrack.


INSTAWRIMO Day 24 is all about the soundtrack of our lives. No, scratch that. It’s just about soundtracks. Any soundtrack, I presume, so I’ll kick this off with a question:

Have you thought about the role the soundtrack plays in a film or tv-series? How it can lift, or sink, a story? 

Watching Twilight for the first time last year, I was really impressed with the soundtrack. So much so, in fact, that I think some of the films allure rests in the soundtrack. I mean, there’s a lot of stuff to unpack in there, but the soundtrack is solid. And it’s made better, in my humble opinion, because Robert Pattinson wrote and performed two of the tracks himself. It felt right, somehow. Especially with the song Let Me Sign that is played in the scene where he’s trying to save Bella’s life by sucking the venom out of her.

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Robert Pattinson performs his song Let Me Sign from the Twilight soundtrack.

But it’s not just so-and-so stories that benefit from a great soundtrack. In A Star Is Born we get an example of how great music can enhance and elevate a really good story to another level. Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper knocked out some stunning performances, both in their acting and with their music, in this film. But Lady Gaga…

Dang, I’ve always been impressed with her, but this is where I fell in love with her. For reals.

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Lady Gaga performs Always Remember Us This Way, one of the spectacular songs

she wrote for the A Star Is Born Soundtrack.

Did you know that it can be helpful to put a soundtrack together when you write a story? Starting out with playlist of songs that one wat or the other seems to fit the kind of story you’re planning, can help the inspiration flow and keep you from veering off track.

If you join NaNoWriMo, they actually ask you if you have a link to your playlist and/or a pinterest board for your story. In some stories, like the Ulfrheim saga I’m currently working on, the playlists come to you through the manuscript.

Edda, one of my main characters, is a singing storyteller. She plays the guitar and has a knack for singing songs as if she were telling stories. Her friend Angel is a “real” singer and she plays the piano. These two perform together and separately, and there’s a third character in the story who’s a musician too. This leads to quite a lot of title dropping, which in turn becomes a soundtrack of sorts.  

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Joe Cocker’s You Can Leave Your Hat On is the first song mentioned in Fenrir’s Cubbies.

If you click to watch on YouTube, it will take you to my work in progress “soundtrack.” 

I find I write better, and with less distractions, if I play mystic from a dedicated playlist through my headset. But it has to be the right music. I can’t write in English whilst listening to music in Swedish, or write in Swedish to music in English.

Likewise, I can’t write to music that doesn’t relate to my themes. Or doesn’t fit the mood. If things are really sad and harrowing, I can’t have music that is all sunshine and romance. And I can’t write a steamy sex scene to sad arse break-up music Good thing we can make different playlists for different purposes, innit…  

Now, my friend, I’d like to hear from you.

– What’s your favourite soundtrack?

– Do you make playlists to support your writing?

Let’s talk in the comments below or send me a message via socials. Also, remember to post the links below if you use any of my prompts in your own posts. Or if you have any playlists to share. I’d love to come over and see them.

Thank you for time!

Puss och kram,

//Evalena 😘

© Evalena Styf, 2021

Writing prompt from #NaNoWriMo Preptober InstaWrimo Challenge: 24 October, 2021. “Soundtrack”

The #InstaWrimo is a photo challenge for Instagram, but it works just as well as a daily writing prompt.


Here are the daily writing prompts for NaNoWriMo’s preptober challenge. It’s never too late to start, so let’s get into it. Together.

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