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Lyrics and Writing Prompts – Any Interest?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #1
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CupcakeKitten's Avatar
 

Lyrics and Writing Prompts – Any Interest?

So I was curious if there would be any interest in some sort of (maybe monthly?) lyric writing prompt? Not unlike songwriting contests/prompts or standard short-story writers prompts, just with a more lyrics, poetry and text focus without any sort of competitive edge.

It seems like there are a fair few people who struggle with writing lyrics in particular, and plenty of really good advice going around too. I was curious if there would be any interest in something like this, where the inexperienced could get a bit of practice, the experienced could maybe flex a few proverbial muscles in a new theme and lyric writers all around would have a chance to step outside their comfort zone, maybe ask for advice or feedback, generally get a bit of practice in, maybe get inspired – who knows?

The prompts could be just a word, sometimes a line that should be included in your lyrics/poem (ie. “The world holds its breath”), we could be given a song title to interpret how we like, or a general theme to work from. There are so many possibilities!

It wouldn’t have to be a full song text, or even in a song structure. Not genre specific either. It could be a just a verse or hook or even a poem, the focus would be more on the use of language, rhymes, expression etc. No pressure, we can put as much or as little time in as we like. It could be epic, it could be rubbish. No judgement, just a nice way of getting some practice in, seeing how other lyricists interpret themes, getting a feel for other writing styles or just getting inspired by words or prompts, running with it and seeing where it takes you.

Would there be any interest in something like this?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #2
I used to moderate a songwriting forum elsewhere and this sort of informal, collective 'inspiration sparking' was something members there frequently came up with. It didn't always take off, but sometimes there'd be a burst of new writing prompted by a timely idea. I think there's some value in keeping the would-be inspirational touch points on the elemental/less defined side of things -- though sometimes specifics are more likely to spark ideas.

Actually, one of my favorites among my more recent songs was written in response to one such 'challenge' -- I wrote about it in this blog post: https://ayearofsongs.org/blg/2008/01...about-my-baby/
Old 3 weeks ago
  #3
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CupcakeKitten's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
I used to moderate a songwriting forum elsewhere and this sort of informal, collective 'inspiration sparking' was something members there frequently came up with. It didn't always take off, but sometimes there'd be a burst of new writing prompted by a timely idea. I think there's some value in keeping the would-be inspirational touch points on the elemental/less defined side of things -- though sometimes specifics are more likely to spark ideas.

Actually, one of my favorites among my more recent songs was written in response to one such 'challenge' -- I wrote about it in this blog post: https://ayearofsongs.org/blg/2008/01...about-my-baby/
Cool! I really like the idea of songwriting competitions and the likes - there seem to be a few which come and go over time. It's great you're involved in them! ^^. I don't know if a maybe-monthly full songwriting contest might be a bit much for me though, i'd find it a much longer task than just laying down some lyrics, especially at the moment as we're pretty neck deep in production of our main project. Either way I think there would be room for both specific and vague propts and seeing what happens ^^

I follow quite a few "writers prompts" style blogs too, which is a little bit what gave me the idea. I guess it's probably because I tend to write lyrics separate to the music - so I don't know if a lyric prompt thing would work as well for those who work with both at the same time? Saying that though, absolutely nothing stopping anyone doing so! Maybe it'd be helpful to those who can bang out a great progression or beat but struggle with the lyrics and toplining? Or just people like me who sometimes like to step outside the studio and production, grab a drink and push out a few lyrics as a semi-separate thing. I guess it's just a matter of if there's enough interest to give it a go
Old 3 weeks ago
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by CupcakeKitten View Post
Cool! I really like the idea of songwriting competitions and the likes - there seem to be a few which come and go over time. It's great you're involved in them! ^^. I don't know if a maybe-monthly full songwriting contest might be a bit much for me though, i'd find it a much longer task than just laying down some lyrics, especially at the moment as we're pretty neck deep in production of our main project. Either way I think there would be room for both specific and vague propts and seeing what happens ^^

I follow quite a few "writers prompts" style blogs too, which is a little bit what gave me the idea. I guess it's probably because I tend to write lyrics separate to the music - so I don't know if a lyric prompt thing would work as well for those who work with both at the same time? Saying that though, absolutely nothing stopping anyone doing so! Maybe it'd be helpful to those who can bang out a great progression or beat but struggle with the lyrics and toplining? Or just people like me who sometimes like to step outside the studio and production, grab a drink and push out a few lyrics as a semi-separate thing. I guess it's just a matter of if there's enough interest to give it a go
I think such endeavors can be fun and helpful for both the individual and the community that forms around it, but I have to admit I, personally, haven't been involved in such efforts much at all since I disengaged from the aforementioned songwriting forum moderating.

But maybe I should.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #5
Gear Guru
 
Brent Hahn's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CupcakeKitten View Post
The prompts could be just a word, sometimes a line that should be included in your lyrics/poem (ie. “The world holds its breath”), we could be given a song title to interpret how we like, or a general theme to work from. There are so many possibilities!
There's a songwriters' organization here in LA that has done things like that -- just the other day a guy at an open mic got up and played a song of his that came from one. I could put you in touch off list -- PM me.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by CupcakeKitten View Post
[...] I guess it's just a matter of if there's enough interest to give it a go
I'll tell you what, CupcakeK, if you put up a thread here in the songwriting forum with such a challenge, and it's got enough breadth/wiggle room for a little flexibility, I'll jump in and support the effort with a songwriting attempt of my own... though I've admittedly got more than a bit rusty.

As the Tin Man (just barely) said: " ... oil can... oil can... "
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