Collecting and Organizing Your Thoughts in Song Writing

Featuring Paul Baloche Posted on January 14, 2010

Once you’ve decided what you’re writing about, you’ll need a way to organize your thoughts—to pull together everything you know about this subject. An excellent way to do this is called “clustering,” which works for prose, poetry, lyrics—any kind of writing. 

• First write down your topic in the center of a page. 

• Then cluster around it all the ideas, key words, phrases, and images that occur to you on that subject. Ideas will spring off ideas. Don’t try to force them, just let them flow spontaneously from the right, or creative, side of your brain, in whatever order they come. 

• Don’t try to organize them yet, and don’t be too critical of ideas that may at first seem far-fetched. Just keep writing down whatever occurs until the flow stops and the subject seems exhausted. 

• Now put the left, or organizational, side of your brain to work: outlining, sequencing, structuring, eliminating unnecessary or peripheral aspects, and honing in on the essence of your message. You may find that much of your lyric writes itself or falls into place more easily using this method. 


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