|I have a narrator who's a musical prodigy. He plays music in his head to shut out the rest of the world and stay calm. The music depends on his mood or the current situation. How do I describe it without looking like it's something that's just dropped for no reason or overwhelming people with technical things? I'm an enthusiastic musician myself, so I tend to get carried away and end up with the latter situation. It's all classical music, if that helps.|
Well, if the narrator has been established as a musical prodigy, it’s not out of place for him to talk a lot about music and his relationship with it.
Don’t underestimate your audience (a tiny bit of google exercise is good for them), but try not to make your writing look like a musical theory textbook. Technical -words- hurt no one. Saying that ‘I ignored him and went back to contemplating arias’ isn’t likely to throw people. Just don’t write it mechanically, in a way that makes it gibberish to non-musicians.
Most of all, focus on your ‘show, not tell’ writing. Here’s practice: Grab a piece of music that you like. Describe it two ways, first in a technical way that’s all about crescendo and decrescendo and each little staccato and what key it’s in, and about the little birds’ eyes that’ll watch and laugh at the poor woodwinds and brass.
Hope that helps you.