• Iona Catherine

Stuck on writing lyrics? Try these 7 idea-generation top tips

How do you write lyrics? Great songs with great words are hard to come by. If you're stuck on a word block, give these tips a go to get your creative flow going and you'll have a great song idea in no time.

Stream of Consciousness
Grab a piece of paper and set a timer for a few minutes. Write down whatever flows out of your mind without thinking about it and without any self censorship. Anything goes, the good, bad, and ugly. Lots of what you write will be a jumbled mess. But I guarantee there will be interesting poetic lines in there too, perfect for turning into great lyrics.
Cut-Up Technique
Physically cut up some articles, book pages, newspapers... whatever you can find! And on whatever topics you think could be intriguing. Rearrange the words into a new set of lyrics. If it worked for David Bowie, it can work for you too.


Layers of Description
Focus on one object/event/topic and describe it as plainly as possible, and then in as much depth as possible, and then as metaphorically as possible. Scan through your work and pick out lyrical lines.
Substitution Technique
Pick a phrase and list as many different ways of achieving the same meaning as you can. Feel free to follow other threads of thought that may arise and make substitutions for those also!
Online Random Phrase/Poem/Word/AI quote Generators
Type 'lyrics generator' into Google. Select a website and your content will be automatically provided. It will probably generate some really bad sentences as well as interesting lyrical lines that you can take to get started with.
Exquisite Corpse (co-writing technique)
Write a few words or a phrase on a sheet of paper and let someone else write the next line without them seeing what you have written. Suddenly you have lyrical sentences that you wouldn't necessarily think to put together which can garner some really interesting results.

Nonsense Words
Write nonsense words within a rhythm or syllable count. You can later forge these into real words by sounding them out/substituting real words that sound similar.


In conclusion...
I hope these top tips help you move past your songwriting block. Sometimes you just need a little creative boost to get going.

Remember, if you're still stuck after trying these out... take a break! Sometimes you just need to let your brain do some creative thinking on its own in the background. Come back to your lyrics a few hours later and you'll probably make some progress.

And if you would like further personalised guidance, from me, Iona Catherine, then do contact me here at learnhowtomusic.com. I would love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading, and don't forget to share this blog post with anyone you think might find it useful.
25 views0 comments