What do you listen to while writing?
I’m sure most of you (my readers) are involved or affiliated with science (especially of the Earthly variety) in some shape or form. And many of you probably do quite a bit of writing … scholarly and/or technical writing, that is.
I enjoy listening to music when I’m writing. For me, it has to be without vocals and usually towards a more ambient style. I dislike the term ‘background’ for music because I think music is something to be experienced in its own right, but when I’m trying to focus and get in the ‘zone’ the more the music blends into the background the better.
A monthly music podcast (that I posted about a long time ago) delivers exactly what I’m looking for. It’s called Bending Corners and each month they produce an hour-long set of (usually) instrumental music. Most of it is a nice blend of jazz, electronica, and funk elements. Very interesting music (to me) yet not in your face commanding your attention. Plus, I like that each file is one long set … there’s no monkeying around with playlists and such. When trying to find a writing groove, we all know how the smallest distraction can result in yet another hour of
procrastination thinking. At this point, I’ve downloaded over 10 of their sets and can just hit play and have great writing music for several hours.
If the task I’m doing is a bit more mindless (e.g., drafting figures, screwing around with spreadsheets, etc.) then I’ll sometimes choose less ambient music.
Do you listen to anything? Do you like it silent? If you do listen to music, what kind? Anyone have good recommendations?