Posts Tagged ‘tools’

easy rhythm infographic

June 30, 2015


Kamikaze approach to writing – NaNoWriMo

July 4, 2008

National Novel Writing Month is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.

Valuing enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft, NaNoWriMo is a novel-writing program for everyone who has thought fleetingly about writing a novel but has been scared away by the time and effort involved.

Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It’s all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly.

Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. And that’s a good thing. By forcing yourself to write so intensely, you are giving yourself permission to make mistakes. To forgo the endless tweaking and editing and just create. To build without tearing down.

The above was taken from the NaNoWriMo website. The ideas translate just fine for songwriters, who also face time constraints, fight writer’s block, over-think and censor ourselves. I not suggesting you take an entire month to write a song. Instead, I think we can borrow a few concepts and adapt them to suit our needs.

Juicy Quotes

July 1, 2008

“Every time you start, you start from scratch. You have your talent, you have your excitement about your idea, and you have a certain knowledge of musical and lyrical tools, but you never know a song is a hit when you’re writing it.” — Alan O’Day

“The whole area of creation plays all kinds of tricks on the writer. It can fool him into thinking it’s easier than it is; it can fool him into thinking it’s harder than it is; it can fool him into thinking it’s working when it’s not, or not working when it is.” — Mark Knopfler

“Don’t let the critic become bigger than the creator.” — Randy Newman

“Unlike some of my peers, I haven’t hit a writer’s block. When I hit a block, I just paint, which is an old crop rotation trick.” — Joni Mitchell

“Use a No. 2 lead pencil with a good eraser.” — Randy Goodrum

“I don’t like to make things too obvious – it gets really stale. You don’t need to be really cryptic or mysterious, but I just like lyrics that are different and kind of weird and spacey – that paints a nice picture.” — Kurt Cobain

“Music is spiritual. The music business is not.” — Van Morrison

“Most people are prisoners, thinking only about the future or living in the past. They are not in the present, and the present is where everything begins.” — Carlos Santana

How to start writing every day

June 13, 2008

If you agree that writing every day is key to becoming a better writer, but still have a block about it, here are some tools you can use.

My favorite tool is journaling. It’s more or less free writing with no rules and no expectations. You can start by writing your name or a phrase like, ‘today I’m feeling…’ Anything to get that pencil moving on the page. Don’t try to rhyme or write in full sentences. It doesn’t have to be original or profound. It doesn’t have to make sense. Just let it flow, stream of consciousness style. You can find info on journaling online.