Of Harps and Heroes

It’s July and once again, I am up to my eyebrows in Camp Nanowrimo.

In keeping with the title of my blog, I practice playing my harp between scribbling sessions. Here’s an example of the sort of music I like to play.

The harp isn’t my only instrument. I also play guitar and ukulele. Some years ago, I used to write songs to entertain my friends.  I had quite a collection and actually published a few as part of a fundraiser. It was one of my first editing projects and turned out to be a very successful one. For years, all my friends would greet me with song requests. Good times.

I used to read a lot of fantasy novels by the likes of John Myers Myers and Charles de Lint containing song lyrics and sometimes even sheet music in the back. It was a delightful thing to learn that my favorite writers had one more thing in common with me besides a love of good stories, that being a love of music. Great writers are usually such far away entities, bridging the miles with words. The idea of them doing so with music as well made it doubly wonderful.

Well…There is a tendency to imitate one’s heroes. I began working on a writing project some time ago, a rambling tale of a young minstrel’s adventures. Along the way, I felt the need to invent names for imaginary folk songs. Some of those titles inspired actual song lyrics, which in turn led to me sitting down with my instruments to experiment with tunes for them. It’s funny how one art can overlap with another.

If I can navigate the learning curve involved in publishing my first novel, it occurs to me that this other project may end up online someday as well. If so, there will be lyrics in the final draft, and possibly sheet music in the back. Perhaps I’ll even record a few of the songs and use them to promote the stories.

If so, there will have to be some kind of dedication page, to acknowledge those who showed me it could be done and inspired me to want to do the same. It’ll likely be difficult to write as I get all soppy over such things. What do you say to people you admire, who have unknowingly touched your heart and had a profound effect on your way of thinking and writing?

Thanks for the songs and stories. You guys are awesome.


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