How To End Writer’s Block. FOREVER.
This month, I’m back with a topic that comes across the table of every writer at least once in their life: “writer’s block”. This topic is something that I’ve found myself in conversations about with some of the best in the business yet it seems to grip even the most talented of pens.
When I first found myself with writer’s block (about 10 years ago) I was puzzled. I “knew” that there was “infinite” inspiration in the world..so why was I stuck?
After immense digging, researching, exploring, workshopping, songwriting workbook reading, conversations with other writers and then practicing various methods, there is one solution I’ve found that has cured my writer’s block FOREVER. Yes, I said forever. To this day, using this method has cured me of the dreaded “writer’s block” and I find any pinch of “stuckness” is cured almost immediately.
And what is it? Simple – Do the Opposite.
Now, I’m going to break this down. What this means is that whenever you find yourself with a block, try doing something completely opposite of how you approach your writing style. Below, I’m going to give a list of 15 different examples of how “Do the Opposite” can be put into practice. And if you follow this simple step next time you have a block, you will find that writer’s block will be become less and less and then eventually non-existent.
Here are 15 “Do the Opposite” examples as applied to writing to spark some ideas in your own process:
1. Do you write in your room all the time?
Do the Opposite: Write in the park or somewhere you’ve never been.
2. Do you write alone?
Do the Opposite: Find another songwriter and co-write instead.
3. Do you usually write the melody first?
Do the Opposite: Write the lyrics or music first.
4. Do you usually write during the day?
Do the Opposite: Write at night.
5. Do you always write socially conscious songs?
Do the Opposite: write a love song.
6. Do you always listen to rap for inspiration?
Do the Opposite: Listen to jazz, country or classical.
7. Do you usually write mid-tempo songs?
Do the Opposite: write a low-tempo or high-tempo song.
8. Do you like songs in minor keys?
Do the Opposite: write a song in a major key.
9. Do you like writing to piano?
Do the Opposite: write to a drum-only track.
10. Do you usually watch comedies for lyrical inspiration?
Do the Opposite: watch a drama fantasy movie instead.
11. Do you typically start with the hook?
Do the Opposite: start with the verse.
12. Do you usually write about people:
Do the Opposite: write about an inanimate object.
13. Do you usually write to pre-recorded tracks?
Do the Opposite: find a band to collab and write a song to live instrumentation.
14. Do you have a particular rhyming style?
Do the Opposite: abandon the rhyme flow and write stream of conscious (with no regard for rhyme).
15. Do you usually ask your friends or family for opinions on lyrics?
Do the Opposite: share your ideas with a stranger and get their feedback instead.
Now, you may be wondering “why does this work so well”? And from what I’ve found, the best answer is that when you do the opposite, you step out of the box you’ve unknowingly created for yourself. Sometimes, we don’t realize that we are continuing to do the same thing wanting different results. However, doing something different usually generates different results. Thus, the “Do the Opposite” method is an easy way of doing something different and finding easy and new inspiration to get your pen’s juice flowing in a new direction.
So, happy “Do the Oppositing” and whenever you get stuck, do the opposite in regards to how you’re approaching your writing and see where it takes you.
About the featured blogger: Ami Kim is currently a topline songwriter and vocalist for DivineTracks.com and is based in Los Angeles.