Category Archives: MUSIC!!!!


A question I get asked a lot is where I find the inspiration for my books, whether it be character or plot, or what have you.

I find music to be very inspiring. As I write, I can’t have silence. I need music playing in the background. In fact, each book in my Beautiful Mess series comes with its own playlist. Now, certain songs may be mentioned in the text of the book or it may be a song that I listened to to elicit a certain emotion as I was writing.

For example, there’s this brilliant Damien Rice song, “Accidental Babies” that I find emotional, heart-breaking, and tragic. I loved the emotion behind it so much that I ended up re-working a fair portion of the second book in my series “A Tragic Wreck” to incorporate that emotion. And I knew what I wanted to happen, but in order to get to that point in the plot, I needed to work up to it. I needed to set the scene, as it were. And that took pages and chapters. So here I am 30,000 words later just to be able to incorporate the emotion of one song. And in my opinion, the story is better for it. So it just goes to show, you really can find inspiration anywhere, at when you least expect it.

Now, I never really posted the playlist for A Beautiful Mess although it is in the back of the book. So here it is along with the chapters that each song can be found in, even if it’s not exactly referenced in the text. If you click on the song, you’ll be taken to a youtube video of the song, except for the first two. I figured those are both fairly well known… LOL

Honky Tonk Woman - The Rolling Stones (Chapter 2)

Paradise By the Dashboard Light - Meatloaf (Chapter 2)

Something Like Olivia – John Mayer (Chapter 5)

Pride and Joy - Brandi Carlile (Chapter 5)

The Blower’s Daughter – Damien Rice (Chapter 9)

Your Song – Elton John (Chapter 10)

Sleeping to Dream – Jason Mraz (Chapter 15)

Brighter than the Sun – Colbie Calait (Chapter 15)

MoneyGrabber - Fitz & The Tantrums (Chapter 17)

Misery – Pink, featuring Steven Tyler (Chapter 21)

Gorilla – Bruno Mars (Chapter 22)

Martin – Zac Brown Band (Chapter 23)

As Time Goes By – Dooley Wilson (Chapter 28)

Never Gonna Leave This Bed - Maroon 5 (Chapter 29)

I Will – The Beatles (Chapter 30)

Beautiful Goodbye – Maroon 5 (Chapter 33)

Go Your Own Way – Fleetwood Mac (Chapter 34)


So what do you think? Is there a song that comes to mind when you think about “A Beautiful Mess”? I know there’s quite a few that come to mind for me, and you’ll just have to wait for the second and third books to see if you see them somewhere down the line. But I’d love to know what your thoughts are!


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Music & Writing

A growing trend we see these days with authors is posting a playlist that goes along with their books. I’m no different. Or maybe I am. Instead of posting a playlist of songs I listened to when I wrote the book, my playlist takes the book to an entirely different level. The music in the playlist is either specifically mentioned in my book, or evokes a certain emotion that I want the reader to feel. As I write and review my books, I listen to a playlist that consists of over 100 songs that are either used in the book or inspired certain emotions or scenes throughout the Beautiful Mess series.

So that’s what I wanted to talk about today. What music inspires me and how I use music in my books. For those of you who don’t know, I’ve been surrounded by music my entire life. I started playing piano almost the same time I was able to walk. I even studied music for a bit during my first four years of college. (Yes, I said first four years. You name a major, I had it…  It took me a bit to find myself.)

So when I sat down to write my book, there was no question in my mind that I needed music playing in the background. And the music really molded the story. My main character, Olivia, is a singer. As is Alexander. Olivia was dealt such a shit life that she uses music to cope with her past. She has trouble expressing her feelings and music helps her with that. And we see a little bit of that in “A Beautiful Mess.” In the second book, “A Tragic Wreck” we really start to see both characters using music to express their feelings even more. The second book is an emotional roller coaster. I let my street team read a beta version of the manuscript as a thank-you for all their hard work. And as they read, I posted the playlist so they could listen to the songs as they went. And many of them commented that it enhanced the reading experience, listening to the music used in certain chapters.

And that’s what music is. It’s emotional. It’s raw. It’s feeling. And I couldn’t imagine my life without music in it. And I hope with my playlists, I’ve been able to turn people on to new and different musicians.

A Beautiful Mess is available now at Amazon, B&N, and Kobo.


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