The Perfect Writing Playlist

There I was, the other day, editing the manuscript for my second instalment in the Jake Tanner series, when I stumbled across the perfect music playlist for writing.

Now, there’s divided opinion about listening to music when writing/editing – or in fact, during any form of note taking. Some say that it’s too distracting and they feel compelled to sing along (which we’re all prone to do – we’re only human).

Others feel they can get along just fine with music on in the background; it helps them to block everything else out.

I’m part of the latter category.

I cannot stress enough how much I need some form of music while I am writing. It’s either that or complete silence. It helps me switch off the other parts of my brain that I don’t need, and allows me to focus purely on writing and getting all the chaotic thoughts out of my head and into story-form.

That’s the beauty of music.

Usually, I listen to some of my favourite songs on my phone or an indie playlist on Spotify, and they work the same way because I’ve become so used to hearing those songs, that it’s become repetitive and ingrained in me that I can focus while they’re playing. Whereas, sometimes, when I listen to new songs on a Spotify Radio or Spotify indie playlist, I get distracted because the other parts of my brain are interested in these new songs.

It’s a catch 22: I want to listen to the songs, but I also want to write.

But then, the other day, while scrolling through Spotify to try and find something a bit different, a bit left-field, I stumbled upon the ultimate writing playlist.


Yep, that’s right. There is a Spotify Playlist called Detox and, as you’d expect, it lives up to its reputation.

Detox is a playlist full of instrumental music. There are no sounds. No singing. No other forms of distraction. Just pure, unadulterated music.

It’s perfect. It helps the mind detox itself of all unnecessary thought and allows the listener to purely focus on what they are doing.

Think of it like listening to a to a load of white noise.

I will admit, though, that some of the music on there is a bit edgy and way out of my comfort zone. But then there are also some pretty catchy songs on there, too.

So, if you’re skeptical, then you should at least try it out once. And if you absolute detest it, then at least you’ll know what you don’t like in a playlist!

I instantly fell in love with the Detox playlist, and it’s helped me increase my productivity by a mile – I can now get through my 2,000 daily word quota in the space of a couple of hours.

Jack Probyn is the author of the Detective Jake Tanner series.

His debut novella, An Unlikely Betrayal, is available online now. It follows Jake’s very first case where he has to solve three murders, one kidnapping, all with no leads nor a suspect.

The first full-length novel in the series, STANDSTILL, will be available in 2018. It is a terror thriller based on London’s rail network. @

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