Why Writer’s Block is Bull$hitOct 10, 2021
We've all been there, we've all had days where the creativity fountain just seems to stop flowing & good ideas avoid us like the plague. But what if this was something you could control?! What if it was possible to keep the fountain on all the time?!
Professional songwriters know that inspiration is the result of action; not the other way around. When you start working on something without knowing where it's heading, ideas start to pop up & say "Hey! Try me!" But If you never look for them, you'll never find them!
One great way to get moving & start hunting down a song is to start with pre-production. Create an outline or a blueprint for yourself, select some sounds, get the vibe going, outline the story you want to tell, & the beats you want to hit. The rest will follow. DO NOT sit around waiting for that magical feeling, go out & get it yourself!
I know for some of you that may be a little easier said than done but if you want to learn how I start making my songs for FREE? Check out these 3 S.I.M.P.L.E steps in the link below!
Alright, let’s get into the meat & potatoes of this shall we?
FAIR WARNING! There’s gonna be a bit of candor & some tough love here, but it’s just because I wanna be real with you & tell you the TRUTH!
Whenever I hear somebody say “Oh, I’m just having writer’s block right now” or “I’m just not feeling inspired” I immediately hear an “amateur” alert sounding off in my head, especially if this is somebody I am considering working with. You see this is a tell-tale sign of an amateur or a beginner’s mind. Inspiration is so powerful & tends to ‘take us over’ when the lightning strikes as newbs that we think that is the only time we should create & that really couldn’t be further from the truth.
Professionals don’t have the luxury of waiting for lightning to strike. We have to hunt that mutha down, as I like to say. Oh, & guess what? That’s the case MOST of the time. Yes, you read that right. That amazing rush of inspirado you get from ‘the muse,’ or ‘the flood’ as I like to call it, is not normal, & that’s actually the blessing! And oh my god, if it is for you, hats off to you because for the rest of us, it doesn’t happen regularly. We actually have to show up & do the work day after day.
In my book, using writer’s block as an excuse not to write is like me telling the gym teacher in highschool I didn’t want to participate because I had cramps. All month long. Every class. Catch my drift? It’s really just saying I don’t want to or I’m not willing to put in the work.
If you’re feeling called out right now, it’s ok, I ain’t mad at ya! I’m just here to tell ya your writer’s block isn’t real. For example, if I saw you hiding under the covers in your bedroom because you thought there was a monster in your closet I’d tell you that wasn’t real as well, to help you. What I’m doing in your bedroom before you go to sleep at night is another story. Best not to look into that further, yeah?
Here’s what I do know!
Here is what is real:
- You may not know where to start.
- You may not know where you’re going.
- You may not have any great ideas coming to the surface right away.
And these are all very real things, but the good news about all of those things is they are totally fixable! With just a little bit of pre-planning or pre-production as I like to call it, you can start creating again in no time.
Think of your music in the same way an author uses an outline or an architect uses a blueprint. You can set yourself up for success by doing just a little bit of footwork before you jump in.
If you’re writing or producing a song, ask yourself the following:
- Who is this for?
-What’s the purpose?
-Is there a market I’m trying to reach?
(By the way, if you're trying to get on the radio or into film/tv, the answer is yes. If you’re trying to get on a Spotify playlist, the answer, once again, is yes.)
In short, know your target!
-Do I have a reference?
-Have I studied the market I’m aiming for?
You’ve got to let the $hit come out.
It’s 100% necessary to get to the good stuff. Stop demanding that your first ideas be gold! Allow for the rough draft stage! The best writers are re-writers! Think about when you haven’t turned on a faucet for a while & all that nasty gunk needs to come out to clear the pipes in order for that fresh, clean, clear water to begin to flow. ‘Not feeling it’ & giving up is like turning the faucet off before you’ve allowed the gunk to get out.
Could you imagine if doctors just ‘weren’t feeling it’ & decided to skip work or if your toilet broke & you called a plumber just for them to say they weren’t feeling ‘inspired’ that day? Sounds ridic right?
You want music to be your job? Treat it like a job. Show up every day! WRITE. Even when you don’t feel like it. WRITE. Even when you don’t feel inspired. CREATE CONSTANTLY. You guessed it, even when you don’t feel like it! You will be amazed at what happens when you show ‘the muse’ that you're willing to show up first.
Have you ever heard the saying
“People like to help people who help themselves?”
I’m certainly a fan of that & so is ‘the muse!’ When she sees you show up she’s like “oh, okay! I see you all showing up! I’m gonna show up too!” Just show up!!
Did we make it?
Are we okay?
I hope this was valuable to you & helped to alleviate some of the pressure of your perceived ‘writer’s block.’