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Monday, March 5, 2012

Songwriting - Therapeutic or Tedious?

Hi there,

I've decided this is the year I finish the first draft of my novel. As a result, I've been reading a lot of how-to books on the subject to help nudge me along. Every single one so far has said that most writers don't actually enjoy writing. They enjoy having written, the satisfaction of finishing a piece of creative work. But the laborious process of getting the words in the right order is often plain frustrating.

I am hoping that learning more about writing fiction will also help me improve my songwriting. I've got to admit, those days when I'm wrangling rhymes and slaving over syllables can be more about exasperation than inspiration...but oh how I love having written!  So can you compare lyric writing and writing a book? Let's see, I'm going for 85,000 words for my novel - a song for me will be more like 150. But of course you have to consider rhyme and singability for song words too. And then there's that pesky music to go with the words.

A piece of advice that seems to be consistent in these 'Dummies Guide to Writing your Novel' type tomes is to allow yourself to write freely. It really helps to silence your internal judge at least for the first draft. So this week one of my goals will be to write a quick pop song. Get it out in one go without agonising over adjectives and getting vexed over verses. No editing. No refining. No censoring. Muzzle that inner critic and let the fun begin!

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