Thursday, March 21, 2013

Music to My Ears?

I love to listen to music when I write. It masks other sounds, helps me focus and provides an imaginative backdrop against which to create fantasy. I admit to being particular about the type of music I choose, generally finding songs which match the themes of each book. So I usually compile different playlists for my erotic, adventurous, dialogue, or even poignant scenes.

For the particular genre of the book I am working on now (and yes, I am getting close to finishing!), I have enjoyed listening to a new category of music from a customizable internet station. I won’t go into names, but this particular station interrupts the flow of the music with sudden advertisements, although it allows one to do “activities” to get a few more minutes of respite from the ads. I understand internet stations rely on advertising revenue and yet there are many, many stations with less obtrusive interruptions or primarily visual promotions.

In any event, I have been suffering through the usual car dealership, PC tablet and cleaning supply ads. But lately, they began to grow harsher. Suddenly I had a woman shouting out about hair care products, while telling me she was sorry to interrupt me. Did I believe she was really sorry? Not at all, especially since those ads were mixed to a volume twice as high as my music. I would be writing intensely , focused and absorbed, content with my quiet melodic ambiance and suddenly she would bellow out: “So sorry to interrupt you!” I nearly jumped out of my skin.

Still, I put up with it because it occurred only every 45 minutes and I did love the mix. But in the past few days, a male voice began to ask loudly whether I minded being called a “bonehead. “

A bonehead? Excuse me?

I pushed through. I told myself it’s ok to be called a bonehead occasionally by an anonymous voice and the first time, it might even have been a little cute. But then the ad started to repeat itself every nine minutes. I timed it. I deleted my cookies. I restarted my browser. I restarted my computer. All to no avail.

For me, this was the last straw!

Can I work well if I am interrupted that often by someone suggesting noisily and pejoratively that I am a bonehead? For that matter, would anyone, writing or not, want such a thing?

Thankfully, I found several wonderful substitutes on YouTube that play hours of uninterrupted music of just the right genre for me. And for my next book, I will find a completely different internet station or go back to compiling my own songs!

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