Get your groove back

Our top tips for overcoming writers block

Posted: 13 August 2019

Those that teach writing often say that there’s no such thing as writer’s block and while that may be true, it’s not overly useful to hear when you can’t get those creative juices flowing. At one point or another, we all find ourselves struggling to write music.

There are multiple reasons for writer’s block, from bad timing to a fear of failure, but the good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way. So how can you overcome this dreaded creative curse?

Freewriting

Freewriting is a technique that’s often used by bloggers and creative writers but can easily applied to writing music. If lyrics are a struggle then grab a piece of paper, set a timer and write down every thought that comes into your head during the allotted time. Or you could use your phone to record yourself playing around on your instrument. The idea is to just experiment and be random and avoid getting weighed down by logic. Later you can go over the notes or recording and see if there’s a particular segment that can be developed into an actual track.

Another thing that freewriting encourages you to do is to keep writing. If you find that it sparks and interesting idea, try to keep your flow, even if it means writing ‘na na na’ instead of actual lyrics.

Be unconventional

Sometimes writer’s block is our brain’s way of telling us we’re just not interested in what we’re writing. When this happens, you know you need to change things up. Why not try deviating from your usual song structure, using a different time signature or switching up your chord progression?

Keep a journal

Another top tip from the world of creative writing, keeping a journal can provide you with an endless stream of inspiration. Don’t worry if you were terrible at writing a diary as a kid, this kind of journal is more for jotting down the things you observe than confessing your innermost secrets. Overheard conversations and descriptions of strangers often make the best entries but feel free to add a detailed account of your lunch if that’s the kind of thing you find inspiring.