What’s the silliest way you’ve ever spent a day? What about the strangest place you decided to study? For me this is right now, in an Ikea in Oslo.

My friend and I had the idea a couple of months ago when we were still coming to Ikea regularly to buy things for our dorms. The food is cheap, the wifi is free, and there are plenty of comfortable rooms to choose from. And so today we found ourselves meeting at eight in the morning to take the first shuttle to Ikea from downtown. The breakfast buffet was on sale until today, so we spent a mere 19NOK (~2.9USD) each for a feast of pancakes, eggs, and various meats and fruits. It wasn’t the most fantastic food, but considering you can’t even find a hot dog for 19NOK in this city, it was more than satisfying.

When the buffet ended at eleven and we found ourselves stuffed to the brim, we moved our way to the displays in search of a cozy room with an outlet to charge my laptop. So we sat in a living room display and read or worked on our laptops for a while, and surprisingly, no one said anything. The couple of employees we saw in that time didn’t notice us. One customer joked that we were a part of the display, but that was it. Not quite what you’d expect the response would be to two girls studying in a display living room.

We have since relocated back to the chaotic cafe for drink refills and more work. Still, no one’s said anything to us. Naturally, an Ikea on a Saturday isn’t the most comfortable place to focus on note-taking or writing, and for that I thought I would share some of my favorite music for writing with you.

Normally I can’t write at all while music is playing. Even if it’s inspiring, it distracts me too much and splits my brain into too many compartments. Recently, however, I’ve found a few songs that just resonate with whatever seems to be going on in my head in the perfect way for writing. So without stretching this introduction out any longer, here we go:

TRXYE – Troye Sivan

This is not one song, but rather a five song EP, all of which I enjoy immensely. If you only choose to listen to one song, I would say listen to the second on that video, “Touch.” He has a style similar to that of Lorde, calming synthpop that you could dance to or read to, and lyrics that invoke enough emotion to get any writer’s creativity flowing. Needless to say, this nineteen-year-old Youtuber has really impressed me with his musical debut.

“White Flag” – Sabrina Carpenter

This little nugget is a new Disney Channel star who will be going places with her talent. Her voice has both the lightness of youth and the restraint you would expect of a mature singer. I suppose I just find the song to be calming and inspiring at the same time.

“Riptide” – Taylor Swift cover (original by Vance Joy)

I only discovered this cover yesterday and I have to say, Taylor did such a beautiful job. The song, like the others in this list, is calm and melodic enough not to distract me too much while I write, and the vocals possess feelings of such a haunting love and desperation that I feel the need to create an epic, tragic love for my story that would tear any readers to pieces. Good job Taylor.

This list was pretty short, but as I said, it’s not often that I find music I can actually write to. I just thought this post would be something fun and a little different than my usual stuff. Do any of you have suggestions about good music to write to? I’m always looking to find my next greatest musical obsession!