I took a day off work (the day job) yesterday after five straight 12 hour days. Spent the day doing very little other than preparing some lovely food as part of my monthly ritual to watch a trashy action flick accompanied by gastronomic delight with some of my dearest friends. Zen cooking I call it - helps me to relax. I listen to music while I potter around in the kitchen.
One of the songs I heard a few times during the day was the first single of an artist that happens to be a friend of mine (his artist name is Ergo Alt and his song, available on iTunes, is called 'the Fall'). It is a great song that stays in your head long after you have listened to it.
It made me wonder what would music sound like if Goyte and V.A.S.T produced offspring. Ergo Alt is that child.
As I was contemplating that genetic lineage, I realised that an idea was bubbling away about a broader story arc that would form the basis of a novel trilogy, of which the second novel I have just finished drafting would be the second part of three. (Aside - it is just like me to start a story in the middle of a time line because I quite enjoy the journey of filling in the back story!)
I have always believed the novel I have just drafted contained strong enough plot lines to deliver more than one book and wrote it with a prequel and a sequel in mind. The plot points for the sequel were obviously robust, with characters and ideas introduced in the drafted novel and an irritatingly 'open' ending written just ripe for a leap into another story. But the concepts for the prequel were vague beyond the idea of exploring the origin of the motives driving key characters in the story just written. Until now...
Listening to my friend's music, wondering about the artists who might have inspired him, and the structure of the music itself provided a wave of inspiration. One night's sleep later I had several plot lines for my prequel and my sequel floating about in my head as well as (in my view) a strong over-arching story arc across the trilogy. I also had working titles for the each story within the trilogy that linked cohesively and consistently with that broader arc. (Admittedly, the working title of the prequel is the same as the title of my friend's music single, though in name only.)
The style of Goyte's music matches the theme of the prequel - a gentler and dilemma driven story about how and why the key protagonist falls from grace. The style of my friend's alter ego, Ergo Alt, coincidently encapsulates a theme of the novel just drafted - understanding the nature of punishment for crimes of obsession. The style of the music of V.A.S.T inpires the sequel - where the consequence of outcomes from the first and second story of the trilogy is a crusade of epic proportions to right the wrongs of the past.
I feel like the puzzle pieces are falling into place now. I am excited.
And the thought processes that have led me here are a fine example of the cross fertilisation of ideas. Music to words.