I want to welcome everyone to the Song Blog!
I know the name of the blog isn’t very imaginative. I welcome any suggestions.
I hope you’ll enjoy the blog as we learn about blogging by doing it. I’ll periodically post songwriting subjects with my take on them and encourage you to post yours.
OK then, let’s get on with it!
Dealing with the Dreaded Writer’s Block
We’ve all been there. Staring at the blank sheet of paper! Holding the guitar in our hands and playing the same boring melody over and over again. To quote Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, “What’s a poor boy to do? “ Well don’t give up hope! There are strategies you can use to combat the dreaded writers block!
1. Don’t Push It!
I’ve been writing songs for a long long time and one of the reasons, I believe, that I haven’t lost interest is that I never feel guilty if I haven’t written something in awhile. I believe that once you start linking the songwriting process with something you should do and linking it with guilt it starts to look more and more like a chore and less and less like something you savor and look forward to. I’m not saying that songwriting isn’t work. It is but it’s good work! Work that should inspire you to do more! Not tedium!
2. Honor Our Heroes!
One approach that helps me to get my creative juices flowing again is to remind myself what attracted me to the art form to begin with. I’ll sometimes either start out by playing a cover of a song I’ve always loved or take a break and do it. Go listen to one of your favorite songs by one of your favorite songwriters. Enjoy the moment and really listen. Realize once again how potent songwriting can be!
3. Trash Our Heroes!
Now that you’ve listened to one of your hero’s best songs listen to your least favorite song by the same songwriter! Not every painting by DaVinci was a ‘Mona Lisa’! For me regarding Bob Dylan, all I have to do is put ‘Self Portrait’ on and I realize even someone like him sometimes struggles. They’re human just like us! Feel better now?
4. Take a Break!
Yes, something as simple as giving yourself some time away from the challenge can often help. Get up and read the newspaper or go online or take a walk, anything other than starting at that blank sheet of paper!
There will be more about co-writing later in the class but for now consider co-writing as way of finishing a song that you’re stumped on or finishing your co-writer’s half finished song! Bring in a fresh pair of eyes and with a new approach can open doors you never knew existed.
Any other suggestions on how to deal with it?