I’ve talked about how I write research papers before (that I believe in hand-written outlines so I see what I cross out and write in the margins) and this is something else I really believe in: playlists.
People makes playlists all the time for friends/dance parties/road trips. And most people I know listen to music in the background while they work. But I really like making a list of about twenty songs that have to do with my paper topic. Sure this is a lot of fun, but I promise it has a purpose!
Song are usually 3-5 minutes long, so it is really easy to get a “feel” for the song. A novel could take 3-5 days to read (assuming you aren’t doing much else), and even longer to understand. And sometimes getting into a combination of “research paper writing mood” and “appropriate for my topic” mood is difficult. So playlists are productive. I promise!
This spring I had two research papers to do and I made a playlist for each. My Villette paper about how Lucy Snowe plays a part on the stage and in Roman Catholicism in order to gain an active role in her own life. So this girly needs some empowerment!
“April Come She Will” Simon & Garfunkel
“Tennessee Rose” The Deep Vibration with Gillian Welch
“People Got a Lotta Nerve” Neko Case
“New Slang” The Shins
“O Mio Babbino Caro” (I watched A Room with a View a lot this semester. But it had relevance. Lucy Snowe goes to continental Europe (read: Catholic Europe) to develop herself beyond the Protestant constructs, just like Lucy Honeychurch.)
“O Valencia” The Decemberists
I basically played these seven songs and Passion Pit’s album Manners on a loop until I finished my paper.