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Tag: songwriting process

The Top 11 Tips For Finishing Your Songs

If you’re anything like me then you have no problems starting songs but have all the troubles in the world finishing them…

Am I right?

Well, here’s a video you need to see. It’s called 11 Top Tips For Finishing Your Songs and I found it on the Musician On A Mission website.

As the video says…

… if you have a lot of ideas for songs, but struggle to get them to the finish line, this video will hopefully help you out.

Check out the video below and enjoy 🙂

Until next time, keep on writing (and finishing),

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting

12 Ways To Enhance Your Songwriting Process

I realised a long time ago that when it comes to the songwriting process there’s no such thing as the perfect way of writing songs, it can always be improved upon.

Listed below are twelve ways in which I think you can enhance, improve and eventually master your songwriting process.

Even if you implement just one of these suggestions you will be well on your way to writing more songs and generally being more creative with your life.

Here they are in no particular order of importance:

1. Always keep a journal
I cannot stress enough the importance of documenting what happens in your life and how you think and feel about it. This always creates the foundations of some great songs

2. Always make time for you
If I ask a songwriter why they haven’t written as much as they would like, the reason of not having enough time almost always comes up.

True, to get a song down from mind to paper requires a certain amount of “free” time however, if you make that time every day to write something or play something you are going to feel much better about yourself.

3. Use all of your senses in your song lyrics
We have five senses (see, hear, taste, touch, smell) which we use to experience anything that happens in our lives. Why don’t we use them in our writing as well.

Pay close attention to your senses, be mindful of them in your writing.

4. Become perpetually curious with the world
I have a theory that songwriting is life. Songwriting is our way of making sense of the world around us. If we become perpetually curious with the world around us we will have more to write about. Some ways in which you can do this:

  • Always ask ‘why’ either out loud or in your own mind
  • Go out of your way to experience life to the fullest
  • Take some risks
  • Do something different every day
  • Become open to learn new things

Life is about experiences, so go and find new ones and write them down in song.

5. Tame your inner voice
Most of the time your inner voice attempts to prevent you from doing what you know you should do as a songwriter. This is your ego talking and even though it has good intentions (to ‘protect’ you) what it says to you does not further your cause.

Next time you hear your inner voice mumbling inside your head as your about to do something, try to ignore it and do it anyway.

6. Don’t be afraid of your own writing
Remember, it’s okay to write a ‘bad’ song (whatever that means) and the more ‘bad’ songs you write the closer you are to writing a ‘good’ song. Don’t be afraid of the outcome, just immerse yourself into the songwriting process and marvel at whatever come from it.

7. Listen to lots of music/read lots of books
This is another exercise in making time for yourself. Listening to music attunes your mind to different musical structures and melody combinations and reading books exposes your mind to different word phrases and lyrical snippets that you can use in your own songs.

8. Learn other peoples songs
I am not asking you to become a cover musician however if you learn songs that you have a real affinity with you will begin to really understand why you love that song so much and with that knowledge you can then apply that to your own writing.

If you don’t play an instrument at least know the lyrics and melody of your favourite songs.

9. Find and know thyself
Commit to the concept of finding out who you really are. When you know this you’ll be able to write a love song for instance, and not have it sound like one big cliche because the lyrics will come from you and not an interpretation of what every other songwriter has said.

10. Don’t throw anything away… EVER!
Whether it be on paper or on your computer, don’t throw anything away, don’t delete anything from your hard-drive that pertains to your songwriting process. What you may think is rubbish now could be treasure later on. Our moods change day by day and so does our outlook on what we write.

11. Join a songwriting organisation (or two)
The best way to learn more and to gain confidence in a skill is to experience the input of others. At the very least you will not feel so alone in your songwriting endeavours. Seek out and join one (or more).

12. Find a songwriting collaborator
Two heads are better than one at times. A good collaborator makes you write better, will inspire you to come up with more ideas, will allow you to ask questions, bounce ideas and share ideas much more freely.

Every songwriter should have at least one collaborator in their contacts list.

Phew! There you go. If you have any experiences after applying any of these suggestions (positive or negative) or, you have other suggestions that need to be added to this list, let me know, I’d love to hear from you.

Until next time, keep on writing,

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting

8 Ways To Improve Your Songwriting Ability

Here are some ideas I’ve picked up along my own songwriting journey on how you can improve your overall songwriting ability because it always amazes me how making the smallest changes to your songwriting process can make the biggest difference.


Listen To Music

It sounds simple enough but by immersing yourself in the music of others you are allowing that music to flow through you and the elements of that music that you really like will unconsciously come out in your own songwriting later on.

Don’t Listen To Music

The other side of the coin… There will be times where silence, not music, is needed to soothe the soul and when these moments happen, immerse yourself in the silence.

This is a great opportunity for your subconscious to process information or for you to just meditate. Either way, immersing yourself in the silence is sometimes a great way to invite the muse into your world.

Keep A Digital Recorder With You

Whether this be your smartphone or something purpose-built, always get into the habit of being ready to record anything that pops into your head while you go about your daily business because you never know where your next song writing idea will come from.

Watch A Movie/TV With The Sound Off

It’s amazing what you pick up when your senses are less distracted. Watching a movie or the TV with the sound off plus a notepad at the ready, allows your imagination to fill in the gaps.

Personally, I also use this activity as an opportunity to practice some guitar at the same time. I know that this multitasking can muck around with your brain a little bit but persist with it and you’ll find that the results are well worth the effort.

Jam With Other Songwriters/Musicians

Always look for an opportunity to get together with other people and just jam for jamming sake. You don’t necessarily have to have a formal agenda attach to it.

Jamming with others allows you to be exposed to other influences plus it keeps your improvisation skills in check and who knows, you might stumble onto a songwriting idea worth exploring.

Find Some Songwriting/Musical Allies

Having some songwriting or musical allies in your corner will go a long way to sustaining your motivation.

No matter where your allies come from (friends, family or mentors) the most important thing is that they are able to provide you constructive feedback without being either to patronising or fake in their praise.

Read Books, Poems And Stories

It stands to reason that if listening to music infuses musical ideas into your songwriting then reading books would infuse lyrical ideas in the same way.

By reading the words of others and utilising your imagination filtered through your own experiences, you’ll be putting a new spin on what you read and who knows, a song might come from that.

Challenge Yourself To Write Something Every Day

This point is all about creating discipline in your song writing practice.

I’m not saying that you necessarily write a song every day but to really get your songwriting process flowing, you need to write at least something everyday.

This could be a list of possible song titles, a verse, a chorus, a blog post, a poem or maybe even some free writing.

Even if it’s just a few lines anything will do.


Do you have some favourite activities YOU like to do to keep those songwriting fires burning? If you do, please let me know. I would love to hear what those activities are.

Until next time, keep on writing,

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting

The BIG List Of Songwriting Prompts And Lyric Generators

Take it from me, there will be times when you’ll need a little bit of help in getting your songwriting process underway.

It’s inevitable…

But when this happens to you, be comforted by the fact that there are free online songwriting tools available that are able to get your creative juices flowing again.

As a songwriter who comes up with musical ideas much more easily than lyrical ones, I use these online random word generators and (song) writing prompts whenever I find myself in a situation where I’m fresh out of songwriting ideas.

I know from personal experience that from time to time a prompt such as a good song title or a few well chosen lines overheard in a conversation can be all that’s needed to open the floodgates of inspiration.

So, with that in mind, I thought I’d do some online research into these types of songwriting tools.

Some are fairly serious and some are humorous but if you have a look at them all you’ll find some value in these sites I’m sure so here is the BIG List Of Songwriting Prompts And Lyric Generators for you to enjoy and be inspired by…


Song Lyric Generators

Song Title/Band Name Generators

(Song) Writing Prompts


You’ll notice that some of these tools are a bit tongue in cheek but there are also some songwriting tools that are seriously good. Either way, by using these tools it’s my hope that you’ll take your creativity to places you’ve never imagined as much as I have by using them.

I’d be interested to hear how you go with any of these. If you come across any other songwriting tools that you feel will help anyone with their songwriting process, feel free to let me know about it.

Until next time, keep on writing,

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting

33 Ways To Stimulate Creative Thinking

I don’t know who originally compiled this but I came across this list called 33 Ways To Stay Creative via mymodernmet.com.

It’s fantastic reading and what a great way to stimulate some creative thinking into your songwriting process…

I think the way that rule #24 is treated is a nice touch.

Which of these rules gravitate with you? Do you have any other rules that you could add to this list? Let me know.

Until next time, keep on creating,

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting


Check out the original link: 33 Ways To Stay Creative

Songwriting Process: Oblique Strategies With Brian Eno

Here is a very interesting video I found recently of one of my favourite musicians and sound artists of all time, Brian Eno being interviewed by Jools Holland in 2001.

In the video, Eno talks about the concept of his Oblique Strategies cards and how they can be of immense help to songwriters, performers, studio musicians and even brain surgeons.

Speaking about brain surgeons check out what happens at around the two minute mark. It’s very, very funny and a great example of how Oblique Strategies works.

Would you use these cards as part of your songwriting process? I would give them a go.

I did a quick Google search and here are some places online where you can find and use Eno’s oblique strategies…

Enjoy the video…

Until next time, keep on writing,

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting

How Keeping A Journal Will Help My Songwriting Process

Do you keep a journal? If not, you really should.

I should know, I used to keep one myself off and on but now that 2020 and a new decade is fast approaching, I think it’s about time I started journaling again.

I want to journal again because I found that it was one of the best ways to keep my songwriting process flowing with boundless creativity.

Now, a journal means many things to many people. It can be a detailed snapshot of daily life as portrayed in the film Bridget Jones’ Diary or, it can be more of a stream of consciousness thing as mentioned in Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way.

Personally, I prefer the cathartic nature of writing in a stream of consciousness and besides, it tends to be a much more effective way of collecting songwriting ideas. Just being able to empty my brain of all its information accumulated throughout the day onto a blank piece of paper is pure freedom.

I once looked at my journal as a loyal friend who’s always there to listen to my problems and share in my hopes, dreams, questions, thoughts, feelings and aspirations.

In 2020, I want to reacquaint myself with that friend again.

Some people I know keep a journal electronically while others are old school and write their journal by hand. I fall into the old school category. I really find the physical act of writing down whatever’s on my mind a liberating experience.

The more I write, the more weight lifts off my shoulders. The more I clear my mind of its trivial clutter, the more room I’ll create for all the new songwriting ideas that I’ll come across along the way.

I know that writing in my journal every day will enable me to get to know myself a whole lot better and to fully examine what I’m doing in and with my life.

From my previous journaling experience, I’ve always been amazed by the sheer volume of information I can accumulate. I was constantly proving to myself every day that I had something to write about.

I know that when I started re-reading my entries after four to six weeks of journaling I started glimpsing some inspirational flashes here and there and of course, these flashes are the beginnings of new songs.

The longer I read my journal entries the initial flashes of inspiration I experience at the beginning start turning into songwriting ideas that pop up from the page and grab me by the scruff of my neck.

I know this happens because I would hear myself thinking “wow, that would make a great song title” or “wow, I really like that line.”

It’s at this time my highlighting pen becomes my best friend. I start highlighting all the good stuff

I’ve attempted to be a regular journal writer for many years and the inspiration to keep a journal waxes and wanes but my re-reading process has always been the same.

After a few weeks of journalling I re-read my entries and furiously highlight all of the potential songwriting ideas and then work on them at a later date.

I’m constantly amazed at how easily a song manifests itself to me by doing this technique. It’s really wonderful what you come up with when you just allow yourself to write.

If you’re already writing a journal then keep at it but if you are thinking of giving journalling a go just do it. Start it today and I promise you, you’ll not regret it one little bit.

Until next time, happy (journal) writing,

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting

Your Life As One Continuous Songwriting Process

As songwriters, we need to be eternally vigilant to any opportunity that might arise which enables us to replenish our repository of songwriting ideas.

When we talk about a songwriting process though, we generally talk about engaging in a set of activities that is separate to our lives in general. We live our lives and in between that we have to make the time to write songs then, we start living life again.

My question to you is… Why limit your songwriting process only to activities where you have to make time? Why can’t you make your whole life become one continuous songwriting process?

By doing this, you create a day-to-day life/songwriting ideas loop where one activity (songwriting) can exist within another (day-to-day life) at the same time

Think about it for a moment… When we make the most out of our lives, the experiences gained will make great songs but in turn, when we also write songs about what is happening around us it helps us make the most out of our lives.

Looking at our lives as one continuous and never-ending songwriting process forces us to pay closer attention to what we do in and with our lives and be more mindful it.

I think it was Socrates who once said that

“… an unexamined life is a life not worth living.”

There is no reason why you couldn’t find songwriting ideas through the activities that make up your day to day life which will in turn inspire you to find more songwriting ideas.

Imagine your life becoming one big ideas loop. That would be very cool indeed.

This concept would only truly work if first of all, you internalise the habit of being vigilant to any songwriting opportunity that comes along and secondly, to have a means to record the songwriting idea as it happens if it cannot be worked on straight away.

It’s all about being present in the NOW, and with that in mind, I’ve now got a song to write.

Until next time, keep on writing,

Corey Stewart
All About Songwriting