If, like me, you’ve spent a fair bit of the last two weeks parked in front of your television watching the summer Olympics, you’ve probably heard a fair bit of music. Between NBC’s opening notes, the commercials, and songs played throughout, music is all throughout the Rio Olympics.
And it’s pretty common to see athletes with their headphones on before a big race. Everyone from swimmers to runners uses music to pump themselves up to compete. I read an article in Spin Magazine recently about the songs that the US Olympic athletes use for inspiration before competing. The musicians listed were as varied as the athletes themselves. From Beyonce to Eminem to Maroon 5, the music is upbeat and meant to be played loud.
And it got me thinking about the music that we listen to to get pumped up about writing. Maybe in that moment when writing feels hardest, when it feels like maybe we won’t ever be offered the contract we’ve been praying for or sign with the agent we’ve been dreaming of, music can inspire us to keep going and get us pumped to keep writing and finish the race.
So I thought I’d share some of my go-to pump-up songs with you all.
This one by Jon McLaughlin is one of my favorites–especially because I heard him sing it in concert once, and he told the story about how it was originally written out of frustration with his record label. And most writers have been there–frustrated with the system, tired of waiting, wondering if anything is ever going to happen.
And what about when you simply need a reminder to stop looking inside and start looking up? Third Day’s Lift Up Your Face is a favorite.
And for those days when you just feel like giving up. On the days when throwing in the towel sounds like the very best option. When you feel certain that you were never meant to be a writer, I offer “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten.
Fight on, my friends! Keep writing! Finish your race!
When getting those last chapters written feels like the very longest hundred-meter dash, what do you listen to? What songs get you going and inspire you to keep at it?