Wednesday, April 9, 2014

H IS FOR HARMONICA!

H is for Harmonica.

Harmonica is for Romance, because a harmonica can make the music needed to capture the attention of the woman with the arresting blue eyes, the director of the show. Mr. Wright isn’t interested in winning the competition–he can’t play a single note on any instrument–but he’s willing to put himself out there, to humiliate himself and offer an audience a laugh, just for the chance to get this woman’s undivided attention for one single moment, even if initially unfavorably. That’s all he needs, one shining moment to let her know how far he will go for the woman he loves.

Now for the Mystery writer, Ted couldn’t sleep well in the less-than-inviting motel room last night, so he stared at the ceiling and attempted wishing himself to sleep. All the while, soft lyrical notes from what he assumed was a harmonica came through the thin walls from the room next door. His grandfather used to play a harmonica, and he wasn’t bad. But who is playing these tunes now? Connie, his coworker, was renting that room. He never knew she could play an instrument. The sound became so comforting that Ted finally dozed off. He woke feeling somewhat refreshed, until he learned that Connie, who was to accompany him to a conference, had been murdered. No musical instruments were found, not even a harmonica. Maybe the killer had been playing a last song to her… That’s what Ted was thinking until a detective turned to him. “And what were you doing last night?”

Music has complemented Literary stories for ages. Well, it complements other stories, too, but the movement in music, the rhythm, often mimics the lyrical tone in literary voices. Literary stories are generally more a reflection of what’s going on in a person’s mind, rather than a fast-paced action adventure, and so it’s not without reason that some musical instrument could symbolically reflect a time period in a specific character’s life. There were times of high notes, times of very deep and low notes that seemed to go on forever… Consider, what is the shape of that harmonica and how well is its music received or given in the ending? Then decide what led to that point.

Children’s stories are such fun to create, and kids love music. I can see a strange looking dude with bony elbows and a large Adam’s apple dancing in the park as he hums away on a harmonica.  But the squirrels think the noise is chatter and they scold the musician until he moves to a new spot. A mother bunny is sure he’s interfering with the needed rest for her babies, and she, too, lets it be known that the musician’s gifts are not welcome. The same with the loud squawking bird above his head. It seems everywhere he goes, no one appreciates his music but him. So what does he do about it?

Choose an idea and get started writing! Or, share your own idea in one of these genres or in one I didn’t mention, such as sci-fi or fantasy. Thanks!

Happy writing!

 

56 comments:

  1. WOW - I love the mystery story already! What's happened to Connie! Maybe it was the murderer playing the harmonica. You have some fabulous ideas Debi :)

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  2. That is an amazing piece of writing, Debi! Who did it? Now I am curious :D

    Stopping by via A-Z

    ~Shailaja
    Introspection in Shades of 11

    A to Z Challenge, 2014/ UBC, April 2014

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  3. Wow Debbie...the mystery and harmonica such a deadly combination. Continue that story no?

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    1. Someone ought to. :-)
      Thanks for stopping by.

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  4. I could do the hora to the harmonica - what a lovely instrument it is. Who would have thought it could be so fabulously introduced into stories!
    Thank you Debi!
    Garden of Eden Blog

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    1. Yes. I just read Silvia's post at Silvia Writes-- http://silviatomasvillalobos.wordpress.com/author/silviatomasvillalobos/ --on the hora. the dance sure could be done to a cool song from a harmonica. Thanks

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    2. The mystery harmonica piece is my favorite today! Neil Young, one of my favorite musicians uses a lot of harmonica in his songs. Makes them romantic and sometimes haunting. Well done post!

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    3. Oh, sorry - I meant that as a comment, not as a reply! Got mixed up :-)

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    4. Neil is one of my faves too. Thanks for stopping by.

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  5. Harmonica is one of those words I just like. Maybe it's the feel of it in the mouth - the word, not the instrument. :)

    I don't think to do much with music or instruments in my stories. I like your ideas!

    Madeline @ The Shellshank Redemption
    Minion, Capt. Alex's Ninja Minion Army
    The 2014 Blogging from A-Z Challenge

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    1. I like putting music and instruments in stories because different types suit different characters, and help individualize them. It also offers noise besides dialogue. :-) That's usually the first reason I grab one.

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  6. This is such a fantastic theme! I'm in awe :-) And so many great ideas packed into these posts. I'll definitely be coming back often!

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  7. You are overflowing with ideas. I, too, loved that mystery idea. You should run with that one!!!

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  8. Amazing how throwing a little device or talent can add that much more appeal (and music) to a story. :)

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  9. Harmonica music has such an atmospheric feel to it. It pairs well with dramatic thrillers. And westerns. :)

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  10. Ha! I picture the harmonica as part of something happening in Jackson Square in New Orleans . . .

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  11. A harmonica to capture the attention of a woman with arresting blue eyes while the detective wires her bedroom because her husband wants to test her love. Now, I'm cooking. Thanks, Deb. Really enjoy reading your posts.

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  12. I have to echo whoever said you had a great mystery idea. That would be chilling to me. The harmonica is such a 'folksy' instrument. It can apply in a lot of situations.

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  13. Harmonicas have so much personality! I think any story that can incorporate one has done itself a great service.

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  14. I really enjoyed the mystery idea and the literary consideration. I know a few characters who associate periods or aspects of their life to music or musical instruments. With one of them it's to the point that I almost can't listen to chamber music and not think of him or think with him while he carries on. :)

    The Immarcescible Word

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    1. thanks for your comments and for joining my blog. You made me smile with the chamber music line. :-)

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  15. Mu husband plays harmonica, and a boy character in one of my stories does. :-)

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    1. Cool. My grandfather played it, but I never met him. (saw pictures of him playing it, though.)

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  16. Yes,, but, I'm not a writer Debi and I really want to know who killed Connie and who played the harmonica.

    Thanks for dropping by my blog today.

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    1. No problem. You have an excellent blog. Connie and the musician...that will have to wait for a future post. :-)
      Thanks for joining

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  17. Thank you for your kind comment on my blog and follow. I'm on a Spring break now. Will come back to read more of your blog when I return. Have fun with the A-Z challenge :)

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    1. OK. You enjoy it too, and enjoy your break.

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  18. Definitely a great theme! And intriguing little stories!

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  19. This post reminds me of a time my son played his late grandfather's harmonica. He was only two at the time but he played it and tapped his foot to the beat like he knew what he was doing. It was pretty cute. My FIL would have loved it :)

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    1. I bet he would. Thanks for stopping by.

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  20. Such a quirky item, the harmonica. Thought provoking and fun. You're slam dunking this atoz challenge! Fun!!

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  21. Wow, enjoyed all those, thank you. Who would have thought a Harmonica was so interesting.
    Loving the A to Z Challenge Maggie@expatbrazil.

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    1. Thank you. I like that they are so easy to carry compared to other instruments. :-)

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  22. This has nothing to do with writing, but I always thought it'd be fun to learn to play the harmonica. Maybe I can thank Billy Joel for that. I've never taken the time though.

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    1. I just stopped over to your blog. So glad to be following it--I love Kelly's song!

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  23. Harmonicas are awesome! and you put great ideas into my head with your scenarios.

    ps - I haven't queried my Lazy Housewife book yet, Been working on the two series I have going, but it's pretty close to done. Maybe i should! (Last year I posted a to z 's from it =)

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    1. It's a great topic. You should query it. I'd definitely buy a book like that.

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  24. I think the Mystery harmonica was my favorite. This was great, the way you worked it into all those genres. Very creative!

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  25. I love the way the word rolls around in the mouth, and it has a nice ring to it... and the mystery surrounding the person playing it...

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    1. Yes, it does. I love the word and the sound the instrument makes.

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