WUI - Writing Under The Influence
Updated: May 29
Of that, I'm guilty.
Influence of what, though?
I'll tell you shortly.
'Take a read of this - great writing; great rhythm' Is what Mr Hollis Porter's comment read under Episode 18 of What Happens on A Cruise...
Mr Porter's eyes (followed by his fingers) are the kind you want glazing over your writing. His reviews, more akin to those out of the Guardian newspaper! His content, reminding me I've got some way to go. So he gets a full paragraph mention, why? Well, it was his comment that drove the realisation of the musical influences in my writing, home.
I re-read the chapter; I got the rhythm.
Then I smiled. He was indeed referring to my writing?
Then I smiled some more; definitely a Guardian or Times newspaper review. I had paid him to write a review but I must have paid him lots. I don't recall.
But what I do recall was that I was highly intoxicated on a beat. Intoxicated, words became sentences became paragraphs became the story.
And, judging by the DM's coming in, Chapter 18 pleased a few souls. It certainly pleased mine. The rhythm locked in from the get-go. Fed intravenously through my veins, coated my soul, and when the bass dropped, so did the words. And there it was, Episode 18 What Happens on a Cruise, Stays on The Cruise, in all its rhythmic glory—the song: 'The Future' (feat. Anthony & Cleopatra) Purple Disco Machine. Have a listen.
Music not only influences my writing but can also become a part of the story.
Episode 13 What Happens on a Cruise, Stays on The Cruise, showcases this beautifully. 'It teases with believable banter, great musical references, some sizzle and the feeling of being away on the cruise yourself.' (Another review from an avid fan whose eyes you also want glazing your story.) This episode has the feel of an entire night out. The feeling of being at a good wedding party where Next's: Too Close formed the backing track. Have a listen.
I'm a little like Lemara in the cruise series when it comes to music. One song becomes my jam on repeat. As in, I put it on repeat for hours and hours. You get the picture. She is someone I can relate to in that way.
The daughter doesn't know how I do it. Listen to the same song all day, all week, rest of the month. Come to think of it, neither do I. But when a piece of music hits, hypnotises, sets the tone, a stage, a vibe - I write. When the music influences, dictates a style, takes me on a journey - words dance across the paper.
As in All The Highs which was another such writing, written while heavily intoxicated under the disco-funk of Mayer Hawthorne's 'Time For Love'.
This short story happens to be one of my all-time favourite pieces of writing, the song again forming a part of the reading. Go have a listen.
A Christmas Day present to my readers last year. Packed full of banter, great chemistry and 'The best sex/aviation-based extended metaphor I've ever had the pleasure of meeting'. It wasn't me who said that. I would not have said it that way myself, but you can guess whom.
But don't take our word for it. Click on the links above if you've not yet read it.
And here they are, playing their part of my listening, some writing and your reading pleasure.
From the current work in progress, What Happens on A Cruise, Stays on The Cruise, what I listened to as I wrote.
Chapter 2 - Rupert Homes: Escape but you may recognise it as the Pina Colada song
Chapter 3 - James Hype: No Drama
Chapter 6 - The one where Lemara gets herself entangled with Harry.
Have a listen. Loco Escrito: Adios Thirteen of his songs make my playlist, it's safe to say I love his music!
Chapters 7 - The one where her boyfriend Joshua unexpectedly turns up.
Have a listen. Tame Impala: Borderline (though I much, much prefer the Single Version) An artist I discovered via the daughter but won't be forgetting anytime soon.
Chapter 8 - The one after Joshua turns up.
Have a listen. John Splitoff: Sing to You
Chapter 12 - The one where they partied Gagnam Style on White Night
Have a listen. Psy: Gagnam Style
Chapter 14 - After the party comes the storm. The tension builds, the story sizzles and the violins come out to play.
Have a listen. Ray Chen Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E
Chapter 15 - The one where Harry's white shirt double-crosses Lemara and Joshua's words almost felt like they were indeed cutting her open.
Have a listen. Cloak Dagger: Cut Me Open I discovered him on Instagram
Chapter 16 - Winston Surfshirt: Smile for Me
Chapter 17 - Winston Surfshirt: Make a Move Another off the daughter's playlist and I tell you what, he can put me to bed any night!
Other music, playing their parts
Junior Kelly: If Love So Nice
Vitaa & Slimane: Avant Toi
Gentleman - Intoxication
Pete Hellers - Big love
FKJ & Masego: Tadow
And true to my writing, I inked WUI, under the merry mix of John Legend feat. Buju Banton, Can't Be My Lover. A beach and your best Caribbean Rum Punch optional!
These are the songs/music influencing when I wrote and in turn, made my playlist. What's on your playlist? Are you guilty of WUIs?