Songs for the Cyclical Nature of Publishing

I’ve been really busy working on revisions for ARGENTUM and a few gaming-related things that have popped up. In between thinking about all the cool projects I’ve been working on and lamenting my novel revisions, I heard a song in my head. Literally. That song was “Bang Your Head” by Quiet Riot. I thought to myself how that was the perfect song when I’m engaging in “writer’s avoidance behavior,” otherwise known as writer’s block.

From Quiet Riot to Muse, here’s my pick for songs that represent key moments in my life as a writer.

    When You’ve Been Rejected: I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor really says it best for me.

    When You’ve Got a Check in the Mail: Big Spender from the musical SWEET CHARITY. Because that’s how fast the money goes!

    Why I Can’t Work for Free: I Work Hard For The Money by Donna Summers. Seriously.

    When You Need to Re-Write Your Manuscript: Here I Go Again by Whitesnake. ‘Cause it won’t be the first time, and it won’t be the last.

    When You’ve Been Plagiarized: Play The Unforgiven by Metallica and you’ll feel a helluva lot better.

    When You’re Finally Making a Living as a Writer: At Last by Etta James and, of course, Take This Job and Shove It by Johnny Paycheck.

    When You Have to go Back and get a Day Job: 9 to 5 by Dolly Parton. These Boots Were Made For Walkin’ by Jessica Simpson is a lot of fun, too. Definitely a song about that “one day” scenario.

    When Your InBox is Too Full: Yes, I know you might want to Beat It by Michael Jackson, but remember –> There’s either Somethin’ In The Swamp by Shel Silverstein or a piece of Sunken Treasure by Wilco. (In other words, you never know what you’re going to find, so DIG IN!)

    When You Want to Give Up: Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey is an obvious choice, but I also like It’s My Life by Bon Jovi. Because really, it’s now or never!

    When You’re On Deadline: Final Countdown by Europe or Rock Around the Clock by Bill Haley.

    When You’re Celebrating or Hit Goal: Dance Magic Dance by David Bowie and 1999 by Prince. For me, I like anything by Queen. We are the Champions is especially good.

    When You’re Depressed: Anything by Type O Negative will keep you depressed. Anything by They Might Be Giants will remind you you’re sane. Of course, there’s fun songs like Funkytown by Lipps, Inc. or Kung Fu Fighting by Carl Douglas that will make you giggle, too.

    When You’ve Gotten a Bad Review: The Show Must Go On by Queen. Yes, bad reviews suck. But guess what? You just gotta keep going!

    When You’ve Got Writer’s Block: My writer’s group tells me that writer’s block is really writer’s “avoidance” behavior. To help boost my creativity, I usually default to music I normally don’t listen to, so I can get out of my normal mode. (E.G. Musicals or Disney-related.) If I’m really, really, really stuck I’ll listen to very annoying high-energy dance music to psych myself up. Pump Up The Volume by MAARS is a good one for that. Otherwise, I’d definitely go with Bang Your Head by Quiet Riot.

    When You Screwed Up: Sing For Absolution by Muse. (I heart MUSE!)

    When You’re Writing: Anything instrumental works for me, especially music by Nox Arcana or movie soundtrack scores. Of course, sometimes I need absolute silence, too.

    When You’re Working with a Great Editor: I don’t know about you, but great editors are my heroes/heroines. So [insert superhero theme of choice] here.

    When You’re Not Working with a Great Editor: Hate To Say I Told You So by The Hives and No More Lies by Iron Maiden.

    When You’re Being Pulled in Too Many Directions: Wanted Dead or Alive by Bon Jovi.

Well, that’s all the songs in my head right now. I’m sure if I thought about it, I could come up with more songs that represent different aspects in the publishing cycle. For now though, these are the moments that really sing to me. Literally.

Happy writing!

One Response to Songs for the Cyclical Nature of Publishing



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.

Want an interview? If you’d like to interview me or request a guest blog post, please connect with me via the contact page, too. Due to time constraints and other communicative concerns, I typically don’t follow up on requests via social media.

Keen on sending fan mail? I am also happy to engage with readers and fans. Please note that I am unable to reply satisfactorily to certain types of queries related to the companies I work for due to the agreements I typically sign. If you have a question about a TV show or a line of books, the best way to get your answer is to contact the studio or publisher directly.

Back to Top