1.Believe: As creative people, we tend to be self-doubters. It’s what drives us to look inward, to constantly question life around us, and, if channeled properly, will drive us to write great songs. It’s perfectly natural to struggle with believing in ourselves and our art, but ultimately, we must trust ourselves and believe our journey is our destiny.
2. Embrace Failure: There is no growth in our art without making mistakes. When we create totally within our comfort zone, and never take chances, we produce stale results. Great songwriting means constantly trying new things and realizing that failing while reaching is the first step to growth.
3. Feel the Power: It doesn’t matter how many artists have recorded your songs, how old you are, or how long you’ve been songwriting, today you can sit down and create something REAL. Something HONEST. Something so POWERFUL that it can touch another’s heart and change someone’s life.
4. No Such Thing As Try: Creative people are notorious procrastinators. I’ll try to make time to write next week. I’ll try to finish that song I’ve been working on for 3 months. Yada Yada Yoda! Just Do!
5. Unlearn What You Have Learned: When I got my first publishing deal, I wanted so badly to prove myself. Every song I wrote included the latest, coolest chord change I’d discovered, along with all the lyric twists and clever lines I could think to demonstrate the writing skills I had mastered. I was convinced that learning, and using all these fancy techniques, was key to writing great songs. However, in order to keep my publishing deal and become a really good writer, I had to learn to cut to the simple, honest core of the song. This often meant NOT doing the very things I spent years learning. Never be afraid to unlearn what you have learned.
Write On! ~Clay Mills