Discouraged songwriter

Is Songwriting Working Out For You? Five Thoughts To Help You Assess Where It’s All Going

Fix Your Songwriting Problems - NOWIf you can hear the problems with your songs, but you can’t figure out how to solve them, you need to consult “Fix Your Songwriting Problems – NOW!” It centres in on 7 of the most common songwriting stumbling blocks, and offers solutions you can try right away.

Here’s a question that may be uncomfortably nosing its way into your psyche: Are you really a songwriter? And hand-in-hand with that question are all the related ones:

  • Can you be wasting your time trying to be a songwriter?
  • Are all your best ideas used up already?
  • If your fan base isn’t growing, despite your best efforts, is it time to stop?
  • How important is someone else’s opinion of your songwriting?

These are all questions that attack your sense of self-confidence and ego. As a songwriter, you “put yourself out there” for all to see, and even the attempt to answer any of those questions can fill you with a sense of foreboding.

These are not questions that I or anyone can answer for you, because any potential answer will always relate back to what got you into songwriting in the first place. But if you are finding lately that you’re entering a phase of a deeper reckoning than the simple “what do you think of my song” typically indicates, here are some thoughts to help you sort it all out.

  1. There is no time when anyone must give up songwriting. And that applies no matter how badly you think it’s going for you. Becoming better takes time, and it’s not possible for anyone else to make the determination that enough time has passed.
  2. If songwriting for you is mostly a form of self-expression, you are never wasting your time. Even if no one else likes your songs, you may still have achieved what you’ve set out to do: to express yourself artistically. That may not make you very happy (yet), but pleasing others with your music can still come with time.
  3. Songwriting ideas are essentially limitless. Bands and performers that pass their prime might be dealing with a lack of ideas, but there are any number of ways to stimulate your mind to keep producing ideas. In the classical world, composers often write well into their sunset years. If you’re finding it hard to come up with something new, you need to expand your musical experiences, your listening habits, and tap into other forms of artistry. There are lots of ways to keep the ideas flowing.
  4. Working with others is a great way to continue to feel inspired to write. Partnerships don’t need to be just songwriting ones. You can partner up with other performers, produce other musicians music, teach other songwriters, and do workshops. Keep looking for ways to keep the creative process changing for you. You’ll love the results.
  5. Don’t let others tell you it’s time to stop. Keep the focus of your music on you, not on your audience. Aim to write music that pleases you, and in so doing, you’ll be finding fans that appreciate what you do. Building a fan base comes from putting your own musical pleasure first.

Gary EwerWritten by Gary Ewer. Follow Gary on Twitter.

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