The Extroverted Writer’s Guide to Movie Soundtracks
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.”
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)
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