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25 DECEMBER 2021


A playlist of the music I listened to while writing and editing A Wish Too Dark And Kind (with key lyrics linking the music and the story).

Music has always been a key ingredient of my life.

When I was just a kid (eight or nine years old), I listened to so much music that my parents asked me if I wanted to learn to play an instrument. I assumed it would be cool, so they picked a random instrument, the clarinet, and introduced me to my private music teacher – my maestro, so to speak.

He asked me to sing something for him, so I did, and he said, “the kid has music in him.”

That started my long relationship with music. I basically played everything, and in many orchestras. I played clarinet, saxophone, bass guitar, and piano, all with the goal of becoming a professional music player and making a living with my music. Then university and engineering came, and it turns out that, as cool as I thought I was, I couldn’t keep up with both a professional music career and an engineering one. Engineering won.

I told you all of this not because I have any regret or because I am closing this blog to move back to playing concerts. I just wanted you to know how profoundly important music is in my life.

Picking the music for A Wish Too Dark And Kind

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of A Wish Too Dark And Kind, what would they be?

This is the question that the folks from NewInBooks asked me during a recent interview. As simple as it is, I felt this was a brilliant question to ask me. In fact, I listen to music the whole time while I write and edit my stories. The more I write and develop the characters and themes of the story, the more I add songs to my playlist. I build these soundtracks for myself and I structure them with no logic beyond “the mood of the moment”.

NewInBooks asked me about songs dedicated to the characters, but here I give you the full playlist, including a few snippets from the lyrics (at least for the songs that have lyrics!) Where I have a character in mind for the song, I’ll add them to the title – I’ll leave it to you to find the connections; enjoy!

Behind Blue Eyes by The Who (Arnaud)

No one knows what it’s like
To be hated
To be fated
To telling only lies
But my dreams
They aren’t as empty
As my conscience seems to be

Asylums For The Feelings by Silent Poets

I find my own completeness
The darkness and the weakness
The light, the fight, the quietness

The Man Who Sold The World by David Bowie (Arnaud)

Oh no, not me
I never lost control
You’re face to face
With the man who sold the world

Build That Wall by Darren Korb

I dig my hole you build a wall
One day that wall is gonna fall

Don’t Be So Serious by Low Roar (Daniel)

Watch your words
Turn to dust
As we forget
As we move on
Still I refuse
To let you slip away

Hurt by Johnny Cash (Roman)

I wear this crown of thorns
Upon my liar’s chair
Full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair

When The Night Is Long by Shelby Lynn Merry (Ioan)

Backwards lullabies feel like a ghostly touch
Roots spread out all the way to godless times
And it’s got a way of knowing when to haunt me
Oh it’s when the night is long

Blue Lips by Regina Spektor (Van Vloed)

They started out, beneath the knowledge tree
And they chopped it down to make white picket fences

Miss Misery by Elliott Smith (Hermann)

I’ll fake it through the day
With some help from johnny walker red
Send the poison rain down the drain
To put bad thoughts in my head

Home by Aurora (Sophia)

Lost in the moment again
stuck where the road has no end
keeping the thought in our minds
one day life will be kind

Lilium by Kumiko Noma (Celeste)

The mouth of the just shall meditate wisdom
And his language shall be spoken in judgment
Blessed is he who suffers temptation
Since he, with approval, shall receive the crown of life

Rain by Steve Conte (Leto)

I don’t hear a sound
Silent faces in the ground
The quiet screams, but I refuse to listen
If there is a hell
I’m sure this is how it smells
Wish this were a dream, but no, it isn’t

BB’s Theme by Ludwig Forssell (Valentine)

I will hold you
And protect you
So let love warm you
Till the morning