Songwriting tips that work

Updated: Nov 5, 2020

Hey and thanks for joining me!

We - songwriters, get a writer's block quite often, especially with writing that second verse! So today, I decided to share some tips with you that can be useful to unblock it and more solutions to your specific songwriting problems! Also, I checked many tips on the internet. However, either I never tried them before, either they did not work on me. So, these tips are slightly different than most on the internet. These are the ones that do work out for me every time I use them.

Problem: it doesn't rhyme!

The easiest way to fix it is to look for synonyms. Or change the phrase into something else. However, if you can't feel if it rhymes or not, I would suggest reading some poems and trying to create a vocal melody for it, use the poem as lyrics. This practice should help you to get used to the framing and formatting of it, for you to feel the natural flow. So eventually, you will be able to create the lyrics that rhyme!

However, not all lyrics must rhyme. It depends on the genre, musical style and what you are going for.

Writer's block, can't write a word! No. 1

I learnt this trick at the university, it seems weird and to me, personally fake (not honest lyrics writing), but if you can't write anything and you wish you could, it works. Also, I believe everything is already in our heads. We only need the guidance to put it well into the words. So, take one or a few books from the shelf at your home or library (better not scientific ones), open them at random pages and go for a first word you notice. Write down as many as you like. Later try to combine them in phrases that rhyme and voila! It's finished!

Struggling to come up with the melody for the vocals?

Listen to the song's that you don't know instrumental or karaoke track on Youtube or anywhere else. Now, try to create vocal melody following the lyrics of that song. Or try to come up with the vocals melody on top of that. Eventually, you will come up with the lyrics too. 

Also, I must mention, it is not stealing anything. It is just helping you to get inspired. You are not using any melodies that are in the instrumental. Nor you are using the lyrics that already exist with your melody. When you practice singing along with the lyrics, remember the melody you came up with, but do not use the lyrics of the original song, because you will create your own. You are only using it as a guide. Furthermore, remember that for the same vocals melody, you could use different combinations of the chords, so in the end, will need to figure out mostly fitted chords for your vocals. Thus, the final product will be completely different than the one that inspired you.

Writer's block, can't write a word! No. 2

Sometimes we are just too stressed to get inspired, to come up with the ideas, so I would highly suggest you relax. Do some yoga, meditate or simply, stretch and breath. 'A 2014 study conducted at Leiden University found that mindful-meditation led to an increase in innovative thinking and the generation of new ideas. Clearing the mind from the fog of emotion allows our creative energy to be visible and more accessible' (Gdanski, 2017). Hence, it is crucial to first take care of yourself and then think about creativity.

Writing that second verse

First of all, think if you actually need it. Maybe you already said everything you wanted. But if not, then firstly, keep playing what you already have, enjoy it, relax. Eventually, you should feel inspired enough for your self-conscious to pour the lyrics out. If it does not happen, give it some time, however, from time to time, remember this song and eventually, inspiration will kick in. Some songs just need to sink in for you to finish them.

That's all for today's blog! I would be interested to know if you ever came up with these ideas or if you ever used these tips and did they work out for you? Also, the next week I will continue talking about the song that I'm working on and will share my findings with you, guys! Thank you very much for reading, and until the next time!

Picture of my songwriting diary, 2020