The one thing I truly love about Christmas are the carols. I love the music, the sentiments, and the beautiful images. Without these melodies I don’t think the holidays would hold much magic for me. The power and simplicity of the words – inspire in me scenes for a novel, or at least some sort of emotional reaction to install in a character.
Take a look at O’ Holy Night lyrics -
Fall on your knees
O hear the angel voices
O night divine
Fall on your knees – I see the desperation of a character, the black moment in a book (or even the inciting incident) This symbolism shows defeat but also struggle and the need for salvation. Then O’ Hear the angel voices - The answer is out there we just need to open our ears. O’ night divine - The climax and closing of a book.
This is how my inner writer works - In my head, as I write this post, I see a Medieval Peer – a Knight – who has fought to find purpose in his life after the death of his wife and child. He drinks to sleep, he works to drink, and his sorrows live so perilously close to his skin. He is so depressed and disparaging he cannot see the light of life around him. He falls to his knees (song inspiration) begging for the life of his wife, begging for acceptance, he is lost and needs to be found. A woman – a maid – comes to his side and helps him to bed – her kindness becomes his will to live (song inspiration – angel speaking). As he seeks her light and warmth they fall in love and he begins to live again. Of course there is a happy ever after – (Song inspiration – finding the divine)
Every song feeds my creativity. I can come up with story and scene one right after another. Perhaps it’s the power and grace of Christmas that fosters the plot and brings to light the emotional depth of storytelling. It’s this time of year, humanity seems to take center stage whereas, other times during the year it is not as prevalent. So, maybe it’s that strength in community and belief that makes for a stronger sentimentality and emotional writing.
My other favorites, Little Drummer Boy, Christmas Bride, What child is this, and Do They know it’s Christmas, and of course – Silent Night.
What about you? What Christmas Carols inspire you? What lines of lyrics touch your heart? What is it about Christmas that moves you emotionally? What are your favorite Christmas songs?