I've kind of been obsessing over Dark Parties since December last year. I'm not gonna lie, the cover really got me to start with. How cool does that look?? The more I then found out about it, the more I needed this book in my life. I got it and loved it as I knew I would, and then was asked to be a part of Sara's blog tour - I was thrilled to be asked! And the subject is RIGHT up my street!!!
The 45 record played a significant role in my upbringing. I was five when my grandma gave me my first 45 – Playground in My Mind. Until then, my parents controlled the music in the house. We only had maybe a dozen record albums – most of which were Christmas themed. But this 7-inch vinyl disc was all mine.
If you’d set the arm a certain way on the old record players, it would play your favourite 45 over and over and over again. Getting ready for school, I’d select one song and let it repeat. I’d soon know every word of the lyrics and probably had – on special occasions – a few signature dance moves to accompany the song. I must have driven my family insane.
When I’d save enough of my allowance money, I’d walk down to Palmer Electric on Main Street in Washington, Indiana. They sold household appliances and, for some strange reason, records. They had a display of 45s. I can remember standing there for ages trying to decide which record to buy next. It was agonizing to only choose one.
Allie McBeal (an American comedy drama from the late 90s) introduced me to the idea of a theme song. Dr Tracey Clark instructed Allie to get a theme song, a song that she could play in her head to make her feel better. My theme songs have evolved over time. I admit that when it comes to theme tunes I lean a little bit to the cheesy side. I supposed for me that’s what a theme song is all about – a life-affirming message.
I still have the same 45-record mentality. I get one song and play it over and over and over. Now I typically use earphones so no one has to listen. But there’s nothing better than unplugging the earphones, blasting the song as loud as your stereo – and tenancy agreement – will allow.
Here are a few of my favourite theme songs over the years. If you’ve read, Dark Parties, you may be surprised at the light tone of these selections, but it’s this levity that lets me write from a dark place. I defy you to listen to any of these and not be in just a little better mood than you were before.
Tide is High by Blondie
Ah, unrequited love. I was in high school. M.L. declined my invitation to prom, which meant I didn’t attend my junior prom. I played this – what I’d now call a ‘stalker ballad’ – to remind me that I’d eventually get my man. And, yeah, a few years later, we dated.
“The tide is high but I’m holding on. I’m gonna be your number one. I’m not the kinda girl who gives up just like that.”
You Raise Me Up by Josh Groban (definitely not the Westlife version.)
This song represents my parents. I am very lucky to have two loving parents who always support me.
“I am strong when I am on your shoulders. You raise me up to more than I can be.”
One Girl Revolution by Superchick
This girl-power song from the Legally Blond soundtrack is just too much fun.
“I wear a disguise. I’m just your average Jane. The super doesn’t stand for model, but it doesn’t mean I’m plain. If all you see is how I look you miss the super chick within. And I christen you Titanic. Under estimate and swim.”
Watch Me Shine by Joanna Pacitti
I used to run half marathons. This was on my race day soundtrack. For the last mile of my first race, I listened to this song again and again. I’d been training for four months. I’d just lost 100 pounds (that’s 7.2 stone). Crossing that finish line was a huge milestone in my life.
“Better watch out. Going for the knock out. And I won’t stop til I’m on top now. Not gonna give up til I get what’s mine...I’m taking over so watch me shine.”
Defy Gravity from Wicked by Idina Menzel and Kristen Chenoweth
I love the theatre. Growing up, I was in every school play and musical. I was an acting major in college for one whole semester. (Then I realised I just wasn’t that good.) I’ve seen Wicked the musical several times. It’s got a major feel-good factor. If I’m ever feeling defeated, this is the song that I select and press ‘play’.
“I’m through accepting limits cause someone says they’re so. Some things I cannot change but til I try I’ll never know.”
The Climb by Joe McElderry
This is more of my life philosophy than a song. Yeah, X Factor is one of my guilty pleasures. It’s probably the song that best represents my journey to publication. It’s been a long, rocky climb. I wrote my first story for children 20 years ago when my niece Megan was born. I got my first book deal the year she turned eighteen. So much of the writing business is about figuring out how to keep the faith. It’s about learning and trying and failing and trying again.
“There’s always gonna be another mountain. I’m always gonna want to make it move...Ain’t about how fast you get there. Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side. It’s the climb.”
So what’s your theme song?
What a great guest post!!! And such wonderful sentiments behind the song choices. I actually did a guest post myself a while a go, where I picked my theme songs and it was rather cheesy at times too, but hey cheese is GOOD!!!
You can find my review for DARK PARTIES Here
Many Thanks to Sara And Indigo for the post