Count me in as someone who almost always listens to music while writing. Unless I’m proofing, in which case I have to have silence. Go figure. But yeah, sometimes it’s a specific set of songs for a certain book or just whatever band I happen to be obsessed with at the time I’m working on a project. The Unbroken Chain series, specifically the combat scenes, were almost all written to the “Scorponok” track of the Transformers movie soundtrack. It works great for chain fighting, at least in my head. Ilvani’s scenes in The Darker Road were written to Sia because I love her voice. There’s a quality in it that reminds me of Ilvani’s character.
For general background music, I love movie soundtracks and music sites like X-ray Dog Music. X-ray Dog does instrumentals for trailers for movies like Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows and tv series like Game of Thrones. Basically anytime you need a soaring heroic theme or a pulse-pounding action sequence, you can find what you’re looking for. I love clicking around and listening to their samplers.
I suspect that whatever project I happen to be working on this fall will be written to the new Mumford & Sons album because I cannot wait to get my hot little hands on that music. 🙂