- I use music to cover auditory distractions.
- Music inspires me, creating mood and emotions.
- Music sets rhythms in my head.
- Since rewriting (especially ferreting out junk words and typos) is my least favorite part of writing, I use music to make the experience more pleasant.
- A forty or fifty minute piece makes a great timer, setting the boundaries of my work period.
My wife seems to be able to listen to anything, even have the TV going when she writes. I know writers who need silence during drafting and need music during rewrites. Some people need silence all the way through.
If music is part of your writing practice, specific tunes and the style of music may make a difference. Film scores, classical music, heavy metal, jazz -- they may not be equally valuable (or horrifying) at different stages of writing. But, if you understand how music impacts your productivity, it can become an ally.
Try different styles at different stages, and track your experiences. The number of words written is only one factor. Make notes about how you felt as you wrote, how the music impacted the rhythm and emotion of your work, how it inspired you, and the quality, too.
If you understand how music and silence make a difference for you, you'll have a way to write more and have more fun writing.