As a musician, one of your biggest challenges is figuring out how to finish more songs.
It’s impossible to finish every piece you start, but you can improve your chances by learning skills to help you complete your existing unfinished songs.
To finish more songs, songwriters must learn to be diligent, build songs with a plan, write sections rather than single lines, stick to a song structure to build on, write songs with purpose, and believe in themselves and their songwriting ability.
Fishing your songs builds confidence, propels you forward as a songwriter, develops your skills, and keeps you exploring new musical areas.
Learning to finish the songs you start is essential, but how do you do it?
Let’s find out!
Finishing songs can be a challenge for many songwriters and producers.
Ideas come, a song starts, life happens, and the song remains unfinished.
A new idea strikes along the way, starting a new song before the old one finishes, continuing the cycle.
Notebooks full of unfinished songs line the shelves of almost every songwriter, but the good news is that we have preserved these songs; they are not vapid, and we can turn them into something beautiful by completing them.
Unfinished songs are an opportunity for closure, a way to test your skills and develop new ones, and they can teach you how to progress as a songwriter.
However, beginning this process can feel daunting or outright impossible, so here are some ways to help you get going with finishing that list of incomplete songs.
Diligence is not a skill that comes naturally to most creative people, but the reality is that learning the craft of diligence is the best way to finish the songs you have started.
Set a goal of never leaving a song unfinished again and stick to it.
Be diligent in finishing what you start, and you will quickly find that the cycle of leaving songs incomplete will be a thing of the past.
You may not be able to finish the songs you have already started with this, but developing the skill of diligence is the best way to finish the songs that you start from now on.
A great way to ensure you finish a song that you start is to build the song with a. plan in mind.
It is good to receive inspiration from as many sources as possible, but when inspiration strikes, be sure to not only take note of the inspiration but also map out a complete concept or idea for the song along with the initial inspiration.
Finishing the song before you even begin writing it and ensuring every new song you start gets finished will be guaranteed by this.
Capture the inspiration, and teach yourself to visualize the completed piece.
Employ this excellent songwriting tool on every piece you work on.
If you find notebooks full of small song parts, one-liners, and simple sections, a great way to start finishing the songs is to turn these bits of songs into whole song sections slowly.
Imagine each line or idea as a complete section, such as a verse or chorus, and the rest of the song outline will become more apparent as you do so.
Writing sections rather than single lines is a much more effective way to work towards completing the song and can help you work through all of the material you have already started.
Another excellent method for finishing more songs is ensuring that you write songs according to the traditional song structure.
This type of song structure can fill out songs, form a structure for incomplete songs to be built upon, provide direction for a song that feels confused, and help you actualize your song ideas more concretely.
Traditional song structure only works for some songs, but it is a great tool to help you finish more songs.
Traditional song structure follows this pattern:
Use this structure as the bones of a song, and you will find that it helps to have a form to follow when completing songs that feel impossible to complete.
A common trap songwriters fall into that leads to multiple unfinished songs is writing without a purpose.
The best songs feel like they flow well because they are written from personal experience, emotion, intense feelings, or to achieve a specific expression.
Any song not written with this type of purpose feels lost from the beginning. The best way to take a lost song and turn it into something tangible is to attach some feeling, emotion, or experience to it, even if you have to make it up.
Sometimes songwriters have to trick themselves into feeling something to write a great song, which is a good skill for all songwriters to learn.
A significant reason for unfinished songs is self-doubt.
It may be difficult to admit, but you may have several unfished songs or have trouble finishing songs because you think they need to be better to continue working on.
Indeed, some songs could be better and should never be pursued, but most songs are beautiful and well worth finishing.
Every songwriter has to develop their skill, and every songwriter begins by writing bad songs.
The trick is to keep going, believe in yourself, trust the process, and realize that you will write better songs every time you finish one.
Leaving your songs incomplete will not develop your skills as quickly, but believing in what you can do will empower you to complete your songs and improve quickly.
Believe in yourself. You can do it. Your songs are good, and they will only get better!
Some songs should remain unfinished, but most songs are worth finishing.
Take the time to finish what you have started, develop your skills, believe in what you can do, and your songs will only improve.
Finish more songs, get better at what you do, and the entire process will feel easier every time. Songwriters must learn to finish the songs that they start, as this is the only way to grow.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some techniques to complete songs faster?
There are several techniques to help you complete songs faster. One effective method is breaking your songwriting process into smaller, manageable tasks, such as focusing on individual sections of the song like verse, chorus, or bridge. Setting deadlines for each task can also keep you on track and increase your productivity. Additionally, reducing distractions and organizing your ideas can streamline the songwriting process.
How can I overcome writer’s block in songwriting?
Overcoming writer’s block in songwriting involves exploring new perspectives, taking breaks, and not overthinking the process. It can be helpful to seek inspiration from various sources, like other songs, books, or personal experiences. Setting aside dedicated writing time and creating a comfortable workspace can also facilitate creativity.
What strategies can help in maintaining focus while composing?
To maintain focus while composing, it’s important to establish a consistent routine and eliminate distractions. This can involve dedicating specific time and space for songwriting, silencing notifications on electronic devices, and even using tools like the Pomodoro Technique to control your workflow. Additionally, taking breaks and engaging in physical activity can help clear your mind and recharge creativity.
How can setting deadlines improve my songwriting process?
Setting deadlines can improve your songwriting process by giving you a sense of urgency and a clear goal to work towards. Deadlines can help you prioritize tasks and stay accountable for your progress. It’s important to set realistic deadlines, breaking the process down into smaller milestones, so you’re not overwhelmed.
Which tools can assist in organizing my songwriting ideas?
Organizing your songwriting ideas can be done using various tools like notebooks, voice recorders, or digital apps and software. Some useful digital tools include project management apps like Trello, collaborative workspaces like Google Drive, and music creation software like Logic Pro, Ableton, or FL Studio. These tools allow you to capture, access, and edit your ideas seamlessly.
What role does collaboration play in completing songs?
Collaboration can play a significant role in completing songs, as it allows you to leverage different perspectives, skills, and expertise. Working with other musicians, producers, or songwriters can bring fresh ideas, constructive criticism, and motivation to your project. Collaboration can inspire creativity, help overcome writer’s block, and improve the likelihood of finishing songs.