On SDD and Classical Music

You're An Idiot, Starscream

This morning I read a report that we’ve had more below zero days than above this winter. I’ve mentioned how the cold was getting to me and have been trying some solutions to boost my mood ever since. (I even wrote some flash fiction about this winter called “If I Had A Snow Day“. Hee.)

So what’s been helping? I’ve been focusing on my diet and have been taking a B-Vitamin complex supplement combined with St. John’s Wort. The supplement has worked miracles for me; I definitely can tell a difference and am actively getting more veg into my diet. I think I’m all growed up now. Scary.

The other thing I’ve been doing is discharging those extra thoughts that circulate in my head by writing them down in a notebook. It’s not journaling (I don’t want to go back and read the garbage, mind you) it’s simply scrubbing out the folds in my brain by connecting pen to paper. I don’t think. I just write either in total silence or to classical music. Mendelssohn, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart mostly. Listz is not on my list. (I have always wanted to say that.) Neither is Debussy, though I do love his compositions.

So why classical? Music is math, but it’s also art. Center-brain. (Like me!) There is some science behind classical music and stress reduction. (YAY, SCIENCE!) Smithsonian Magazine has an article written by Galina Mindlin about Music Playlists to Sooth Your Mind. The idea that music reduces stress isn’t new, but for me it’s a specific kind of music–especially since I’m so sound-sensitive. Every sound is a note to me. It’s one of the reasons why it’s easy for me to translate accents into words when I write and why I don’t like noisy crowds. There’s too many noises and sensations for me to parse out unless there’s a unifying theme like folks singing a song or chanting.

Anyway, so SDD (e.g. Seasonal Depressive Disorder)? Managed. YAY! We’ve got more snow coming this weekend and supposedly it’ll be above twenty later next week. I think even the forecasters are optimistic on that front. *rim crash* Plus, with National Craft Month on the horizon… This winter is coming to an end. Spring is coming. (Hear that! NOT SECOND WINTER!!)

P.S. I’m a firm believer that this is why animated films can also be very relaxing; there’s the logic portion of it where bodies move and characters talk in a specific manner, mimicking our world. Well, usually. And then there’s the artistic part. The lines, the colors, the style. Art forms that activate both sides of your brain force you to focus on the experience. Ergo, you relax because you’re immersed in what you’re watching and seeing.

    Mood: One day at a time
    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: I didn’t overdo it.
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: Recovery day.
    In My Ears: An annoying side-effect from a shaky box of Girl Scout Cookies. Guess I have to clean my desk!
    Game Last Played: Sonic All Star Racing Transformed
    Book Last Read: Lovecraft’s Monsters anthology
    Movie Last Viewed: THOR: A Dark World
    Latest Artistic Project: *Still* *still* *still* need to take pictures… It’s on the list!
    Latest Fiction/Comic Release: Last Man Zombie Standing
    Latest Game Release: Freedom Flyer
    What I’m Working On: Primarily tie-in games work and novels.

Monica Valentinelli is a writer, editor, and game developer. Her portfolio includes stories, games, comics, essays, and pop culture books.

In addition to her own worlds, she has worked on a number of different properties including Firefly, Vampire: the Masquerade, Shadowrun, Hunter: the Vigil, Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn, and Robert E. Howard’s Conan.

Looking for Monica’s books and games that are still in print? Visit Monica Valentinelli on Amazon’s Author Central or a bookstore and game store near you.

Want to Interview or Hire Me? Send Fan Mail?

Would you like to hire me? Because my projects and manuscripts are in flux, I am always open to discussing new opportunities with publishers and studios. As a full-time writer, I spend a portion of my time seeking new gigs–so don’t be afraid to reach out. If you’re interested, please e-mail me via my Contact Page. I typically reply to work-related e-mails within one-to-two business days.

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