Writer Bryony Wood explains why she jumped at the chance to combine her two favourite things; Jesus and The Sound of Music, with her new book ‘The Sound of Musings’.
I have an old photo of a “girl in white dress with blue satin sash” wearing an edelweiss necklace. It’s me as an eight-year-old bridesmaid. That photo prompts an audio memory too; me, singing to every word of every song to the only record I owned; the soundtrack of The Sound of Music.
For nearly sixty years, I, like millions of people accross all generations and across the world, have delighted in the tale of the “flibbertigibbet” singing nun who became a governess and married her handsome captain. Hollywood’s interpretation of Maria’s story with its iconic songs is firmly embedded into popular culture. Whether watched on a screen or live on stage, many will recognise those opening notes of “Do-Re-Mi” understanding that “starting at the very beginning is a very good place to start”.
The Sound of Music is not a “christian film”, yet it’s packed with spiritual insights. From the opening scene to closing credits, every song and scene offers opportunities to reflect upon life, love and faith. So it’s really not surprising that The Sound of Music should inspire a devotional book; perhaps it’s more surprising that no one seems to have written one before!
The Sound of Music is not a “christian film”, yet it’s packed with spiritual insights.
A couple of years ago, having taken early retirement from being a vicar, I was seeking opportunities to write about God’s love. The prospect of writing about two of my favourite things; Jesus and The Sound of Music seemed a heaven sent opportunity. And so I did.
I started at the very beginning, and set up my Sound of Music DVD to watch with remote controller in one hand and notebook and pen in the other. Watching it scene by scene, intentionally, prayerfully, I was amazed how rich it was with spiritual treasures. Then one day the title “The Sound of Musings” popped into my mind with what felt a hug from God. Those early scribblings, those “musings” exploring the joys and challenges of following Jesus, linked really well into different Bible passages too.
It became a short feature on BBC local Sunday radio with my “musings” alongside the film’s most popular songs.
After testing this in a blog, I accepted readers’ prompts that this was worth sharing. It became a short feature on BBC local Sunday radio with my “musings” alongside the film’s most popular songs. Then The Sound of Musings became a regular column in a Christian newspaper. It appeared I was onto something!
The day I signed my publishing contract with Instant Apostle will be etched in my heart forever. This is a God dream being fulfilled, and I’m in awe of what he’s unfolding. For years, I’d wanted to write a book sharing God’s love that’s accessible and inspiring, entertaining and honest. The kind of book you could give to a friend who’s just wondering about God and church, as well as a book for churchgoers to explore more about Jesus. The Sound of Musings is a becoming that book, and I trust and pray it will help us all share something of Maria’s journey as she discovered God’s will for her life.
“The Sound of Musings” is published by Instant Apostle; in both UK and internationally.