The Extroverted Writer’s Guide to Movie Soundtracks

Myke Cole

Headshots of Myke Cole

Writers like to talk about how introverted they are. “I turned to writing because I couldn’t handle social situations.” “I can’t stand being around other people, if I do it for too long, I have to be alone to recharge my batteries.” “In a perfect world, I’d have my little hobbit hole, where I could be alone, sitting and writing all day.”

Fuck that.

I mean, I’m sure that’s true for those people. I know there are Emily Dickenson types out there who wordsmith for the sheer joy of the craft, who delight in the quiet spaces, alone with their thoughts, nothing but the tapping of keys for company.

I am absolutely not one of those people.

I am social to fault. I love crowds, love being the center of attention, love conversation (preferably loud conversation), love parties, love public speaking. I hate writing. I’ve often compared it to sawing off my own leg. It takes forever and hurts like hell.

But I love having written. I revel in hearing reader reactions to my work. I’m not Emily Dickenson. I write to communicate, and when that communication is two way . . . well, that’s the most sublime feeling in the world. It’s why I do it. I used to beat myself up for this external motivation, but I’ve made my peace with it. In the end, folks will judge me by my work, and that’ll have to be enough.

What this means is that, when I do write, I frequently do it in libraries or coffee shops, on trains or planes, in public spaces where I don’t have to deal with loneliness. But the work still has to get done, and that means I need barriers against my naturally social self, things that will stop me from entering into (or eavesdropping on all the interesting conversations around me).

Enter the movie (or video game) soundtrack. These put me in a cinematic frame of mind, filling my ears with sweeping, majestic scores that evoke images that inspire, and most importantly, drown out everyone around me, without my having to be alone.

Here are a few of my favorites, should you be so inclined to give my tactic of simultaneous social engagement/isolation a whirl the next time you put hand to keyboard:

–          Armageddon (film)

–          Avatar (film)

–          Band of Brothers (television series)

–          Battle: LA (film)

–          Blackhawk Down (film)

–          Braveheart (film)

–          Captain America (film)

–          The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (film)

–          The Day After Tomorrow (film)

–          Dragon Age 2 (video game)

–          The Eagle (film)

–          Elizabeth (film)

–          Game of Thrones (television series)

–          Gladiator (film)

–          Hanna (film)

–          The Hobbit (film)

–          How to Train Your Dragon (film)

–          Inception (film)

–          Invincible (instrumental album)

–          Iron Man (film)

–          Kingdom of Heaven (film)

–          The Last of the Mohicans (film)

–          Limitless (film)

–          The Lord of the Rings (film)

–          Lost (television series)

–          The Mission (film)

–          Music of DC Comics (films and television series)

–          Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief (film)

–          Prince of Persia (film)

–          Robin Hood (film)

–          The Social Network (film)

–          Sword and Sworcery (video game)

–          Tangled (film)

–          Thor (film)

–          Transformers (film)

–          TRON: Legacy (film)

–          True Blood (television series)

–          The Tudors (television series)

–          Unearthed (instrumental album, some songs have been used on TV)

–          The Wolfman (film)

–          X-Men: First Class (film)

–          10,000 BC (film)


Giveaway Details! One US commenter will win a copy of FORTRESS FRONTIER‏. To enter tell Myke what your favourite movie soundtrack is!

  • Rain Maiden Jen January 25, 2013 at 11:36 am

    I would have to say I love the Indian Jones soundtrack. Entertainment would be crap without music. Thanks for the post.

  • Richard Auffrey January 25, 2013 at 11:37 am

    The original Star Wars soundtrack really gets to me.

  • Michelle Knowtlon January 25, 2013 at 11:41 am

    Crow all the way.

  • Shecky January 25, 2013 at 11:42 am

    The Bear McCreary BATTLESTAR GALACTICA soundtrack is my standard go-to/fallback playlist for when I need to focus on long periods of work (at home, that is; we’re not allowed to listen to music at my workplace).

  • M E Lucas January 25, 2013 at 11:52 am

    I think you missed out the Matrix soundtrack by Don Davis, fabulous. Although, my favourite at the moment is still Inception by Hans Zimmer.

  • Cliff Lewis January 25, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    Fellowship of the Ring soundtrack really puts me in the right frame of mind to write.

  • Martin Cahill January 25, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    The Princess Mononoke Soundtrack. Haunting and beautiful, I could listen to that forever.

  • Rachel January 25, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    There are quite a few listed that I don’t have. I’ll have to put them on my to buy list. Right now, I seem to have trained myself to be creative while listening to “This is Gallifrey” from Doctor Who.

  • erinf1 January 25, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    thanks for a fun post and congrats to Myke on the new release! I also love the Bear McCreary BSG soundtrack!

  • bn100 January 26, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    Nice post. The phantom of the opera.

  • Tami Veldura January 30, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    Black Hawk Down soundtrack all the way. Also the Tron: Legacy Remastered mix.

  • MrsAWiggins05 January 30, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    Oddly enough, You’ve Got Mail and NottingHill. Odd because I’m not a “romantic” person, but I love the diversity and energy of these two sound tracks.

  • Roger Bellini January 30, 2013 at 9:08 pm

    My favorite movie soundtrack is Gladiator, followed by 300 in sevond.

  • Kristen January 31, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    Trying to pull a soundtrack that I enjoy out of my foggy brain is looping A Knight’s Tale or Notting Hill. Now I shall have to go back and watch some movies and pay more attention to the soundtracks.

  • Patrick DeLise February 1, 2013 at 2:44 pm

    Conan the Barbarian (Original 1982) and LotR: Fellowship of the Ring soundtracks are my favorites.

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