December 4, 2014

Band Geek Thursday: Amy K. Nicols' NOW THAT YOU'RE HERE Playlist

Today we have Amy Nichols with us for Band Geek Thursday with he playlist for her debut Now That You're Here. Thanks for being here, Amy!

I am so excited to be on Band Geek Thursday! Not only am I bona fide band geek (marching band rules!), but music played a huge part in writing my debut novel, Now That You’re Here

Now That You’re Here is the story of Danny, a boy who finds himself in a parallel universe where his friends are nowhere and his parents are dead. The only person he recognizes is Eevee, but in this world she’s not the mysterious femme fatale he once kissed back home. This Eevee, though—a girl who’d rather land an internship at NASA than a date to the prom—may be his only hope of getting home.

Eevee tells herself she’s only helping him in the name of quantum physics, but there’s something undeniably fascinating about this boy from another dimension . . . a boy who makes her question who she is, and who she might be in another place and time.

The novel is told in alternating chapters from both Danny’s and Eevee’s POVs, and music helped me lock into their characters as well as the emotions of the story. Here are the songs I listened to while writing. 

The Beginning of the End - Nine Inch Nails: This song captured the feeling of Danny’s world and the situation he’s in just before he jumps. Plus the song just rocks.

The Suburbs - Arcade Fire: The laid-back feeling of this song felt like Eevee’s world, especially in the bike scene. I love how the song is kind of happy-go-lucky, but the words hint at something not being quite right.

Starlight - Muse: I love this song. It became Danny’s theme song. He’s the traveler, far from home. 

Satellite - Guster: Danny’s and Eevee’s relationship is a slow-build, rather than insta-love. This song feels like their relationship. It isn’t desperate, it’s comfortable. It has a feeling of permanence and solidity despite challenges and changing circumstances.

We Used to Wait - Arcade Fire: As with most stories, things don’t stay rainbows and kittens for long. Danny realizes not only does he not necessarily want to leave this parallel world—and Eevee—but he also realizes he may not have a choice. The ticking clock feel of this song was perfect for the increasing trouble Danny finds himself in. 

Panic Switch - Silversun Pickups: Back when I got the initial idea for Now That You’re Here, this song was my go-to for getting into the writing groove. The working title of Now That You’re Here was Panic Switch. Awesome song. 

Under the Milky Way - The Church: There’s a night scene where Danny and Eevee sit outside and look at the stars. This is the song for that scene. 

One Headlight - The Wallflowers: There’s a point where Danny and Eevee decide they’re going to do what they can to keep Danny from jumping back to his world. There’s a strange mix of hope and desperation in this song that matched up with their struggle. 

Work - Jars of Clay: Universe-jumping is hard on the body, as Danny finds out. This song, with its pounding beat and painful lyrics, captured both his physical and emotional struggle. Such a great song. 

Bleeding - Sixpence None the Richer: Like “Work”, this song captures the emotional and physical journey both Danny and Eevee go through over the course of the book. And again, star references. I listened to this at the point Eevee thinks all is lost.

Stay - Rihanna: I remember the first time I heard Stay on the radio. My mouth fell open, and I couldn’t believe my ears. It was like she’d written Danny and Eevee’s story. If Now That You’re Here has a theme song, this is it. 

Amy K. Nichols lives on the edge of the Phoenix desert with her husband and children. In the evenings, she enjoys sitting outside, counting bats and naming stars. Sometimes she names the bats. Now That You’re Here is her first novel. The sequel, While You Were Gone, will be published by Knopf in the summer of 2015. Visit her online at

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