Posted by: Corey | January 17, 2012

How To Write Lyrics 1 [Practice]

It’s a common situation where you’ll have a musician who’s great at writing music, but gets completely hung up on writing lyrics. And they might want to delve into lyric writing, but they don’t know where to start and they’re not sure how to approach it. Or maybe you’re an aspiring songwriter who doesn’t even have a handle on music just yet.

So in this post, I’d like to talk about how to write better lyrics for your songs. The most important thing in getting past that initial roadblock of getting started, (AND the most important thing for long-term success), is doing exactly what you did to learn how to play your instrument- practice.

If you sit down for ten minutes a day and you just practice writing out some lines, you’ll actually get a lot better at it. Some things you could write about are:

  • What you’re thinking
  • Something you have to say
  • A scenerio
  • A dream you have
  • A literal dream you had at night

Just practice putting your thoughts down into a form that looks like lyrical stanzas, and that will help you to feel comfortable with the process.

I know this first post sounds a little bit like a cop-out since I’m telling you to do the work. But listen. When I first started out, I got about a stanza of finished lyrics done in a year. And that was good for me 🙂 But the problem was that I was doing what a lot of people do- only occasionally taking a stab at writing, and then trying to come up with something great. You don’t know what you’re doing and you’re pressuring yourself for gold.

The truth is that you have to do the opposite of both of those. Write anything, and write it often. This is how you unlock the ability to be a consistent lyricist.

Here’s a video I made about the subject:

Okay. So practice is the first step. The next thing you’re going to want to learn to do is analyze the lyrics you’re into.

Please leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts 🙂

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Responses

  1. […] you figure out what it is that you like, go to step 1 and practice it! If you like things with a lot of imagery, write a couple of stanzas that are so […]

  2. […] Here’s the first blog post in the series […]

  3. I have to laugh at myself for not figuring out sooner what you’ve put in this post – the key to success in songwriting is to practice songwriting. It’s so simple I guess I’ve really overlooked it.

    I’ve literally told myself for years that I want to be a successful songwriter, and I’ve gone nuts studying music theory and playing scales and chord progressions, trying to figure out melodies, “waiting” for inspiration to strike… and all this time, I’ve rarely actually sat down to write lyrics.

    Thank you for so clearly identifying the one thing I was missing.


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