5 Tips To Better Songwriting

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Article by: Carley Varley

Music Creator | vlogger | VISIONQUEST SOUND BLOG

Start Improving Your Writing Today

I absolutely love writing about this topic because I cannot tell you the amount of times I have had writer’s block or felt that my writing wasn’t good enough.

Songwriting can be very tricky but it is a practice.
The more you do it the more you WILL improve!

The magic of writing songs!
The magic of writing songs!

I didn’t write a song for about 4 years; during this time I just felt I had nothing to write about and I didn’t feel very creative. After going through a difficult time, I suddenly found relief in song writing and I began to get random melodies stuck in my head and soon enough I was writing again!

So, to help other song-writers, I wanted to give these:

5 Top Tips for Better Songwriting:

5. Set a Time Limit


So, if you’re like me I do quite well if I have a deadline. If I don’t have a time where I need to get things done by, I really struggle to get myself motivated to do anything.

Back when I was struggling to write I set myself a time limit to complete songs. I’d book in studio days where I NEEDED the song by… and then I’d do it!

music blog for acoustic songwriter Carley Varley

This helped me write 3 of my singles that I have released.

If I hadn’t set this amount of time to write I honestly don’t think I’ve written the songs.Setting yourself days to sit down and write is also a handy tip. Have ‘Song writing days’ and do nothing else but write!

127: How to be a Successful Indie Artist VQS Studio Podcast

4. Get Advice from other Musicians
and Write about other Experiences.

Watch Videos…

I would watch random videos and write from different perspectives; and I would message other musicians and ask them about their experiences with writer’s block.

mokup smartphone technology phone


Even doing a collaboration with other musicians is a great idea; and when more creative minds are working together you will get

teamwork hands

As I struggled to write due to not having anything really that I wanted to write about… In the end it took a few conversations with a friend for me to write about a topic she felt would be perfect for a song!

Songwriting doesn’t have to be about your experiences, you really can write about anything.

I wrote a song about a break-up but I am happily engaged and have never had a painful break-up, but people thought that I had because of the song and the way that I wrote it!

So, get advice from other musicians and write about whatever you want to… it can be anything!

3. Use Instruments to make a melody – and then randomly sing…

Carley Varley

This tip is one of my favorite ones.

You can use any instrument to find a melody too, but often…. the most simple melodies are the BEST! 

It is something that I do when I write music. I sit down on the piano for an hour or so and I play random chords and then sing a melody over it…

After a while… words will come and then BOOM – a song! This gives me a rough idea of the song and random lyrics that may be meant for that song or a different one.

It’s a very simple practice but …
…. one that has helped me so much.

2. Go Somewhere that Inspires You…

whether it’s a “BUSY” atmosphere or “QUIET.” I do this constantly… have a set place that I go to write and its outside in forests, mostly. I sit there with my guitar and I just play, sometimes people walk past and its awkward but quiet spots really work well for me. There are times though where I will write inside a busy café and that works, too.

Sometimes being stuck inside your house every time you write doesn’t help… so, get out or go somewhere new!

So find your place that inspires you and helps you write, experiment and try different environments.

1. “Carry a Journal with you EVERYWHERE and RECORD.”

My most important tip today is always carrying a song writing journal and always record your melodies.
I always have a journal and my phone on me when I song write because otherwise, I forget words and melodies.

This is a basic tip that really does make all the difference.
I cannot express how many melodies I would have lost if I hadn’t of recorded my song writing sessions or how many lyrics I threw away when I should have kept all of them. 

I really hope that these tips help you today, as I say they are very basic but they help me all the time; and they are steps that I keep in place to ensure that I am writing well, and well…,WRITING! 

Congratulations for getting this far!

In conclusion… remember these tips:

  1. Carry a journal and recorder.
  2. Write in a place that inspires you – Quiet vs. Busy.
  3. Use an instrument / randomly sing.
  4. Get advice from musicians / collaborate.
  5. Set a time limit for completion.

What songwriting challenges are you going through? I’d love to hear from you. Please leave a comment or get in touch.

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Article by: Carley Varley

Music Creator, vloggeR | VISIONQUEST SOUND BLOG

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