Sometimes I need quiet. The world presses against me, threatens to drown me. The world is too loud, too fast, too confusing, too mean, too much. So I seek a quiet, dark place to sit. Sit and breathe. Alone away from people with their agendas and desires.
I've found that a lot of creative people seek solitude at times. For most of us, we crave it. I've known a few people who say they can write in the middle of a busy intersection. I am impressed by their powers of concentration, but I couldn't do it. I need a certain amount of calm.
I do play music when I write. But it needs to be music I know well so that I can ignore it. Or so that it can fall below my level of attention if that makes sense. I am conscious of it somewhat. Fast songs make me write faster; slower pieces slow me down. Sad songs and dramatic songs likewise influence my mood.
For each of my books, I had a soundtrack. Mostly fast, upbeat music, but slower, darker songs for the murder mysteries. I can use music to set the mood for the book, be it inspirational, holiday, mystery, and so on.
I used to wonder what pens other authors used, and then I wondered what computers and what word processing programs. Now, I wonder what music they use. Or do they require only the blessed quiet? I can understand that.