Steps to Successful Songwriting
There is a difference between a songwriter and a HIT songwriter. Not every songwriter kisses the sky. It’s not easy! While songwriting is purely a creative process, it involves the mindset, as well as the habits of the songwriter. If you want to attain success as a songwriter, you must allow yourself to find the inspiration, add your essence and follow universal guidance. At the end of the day, it comes down to regimen, hard work, and most importantly, passion.
Step 1: Realize the Purpose of Songwriting
If you want to reach somewhere, you must first know where you should go. If you want to be successful in your songwriting journey, you must first start visualizing where you want to be in the future. Yes, this should sound obvious to you. But the truth is that it’s neglected very often. Many times, I could come across the songwriters who are traveling with the mindset that something will happen to them, and without knowing what that thing is. So, as a first step, you must define yourself and realize your purpose of songwriting. You must ask yourself, why am I writing songs? What do I want to say? How do I want to change the world?
Step 2: Write a lot
Although it seems difficult, I would recommend you to have at least ten songs in your hands before you start playing them for people. For some of you, this number may seem a lot. But never move forward and start pitching until you have some songs (minimum of 10) that you think that are competitive and commercially viable. For most of the songwriters, getting ten songs with such value would demand writing more than 100 songs. But, believe me, these efforts will pay off in the future. The most important thing to do is to keep creating, keep finding inspiration and keep sharing your talents with the world!
Step 3: Start playing your songs
So, you have ten competitive songs with you. Now, you can start playing your songs to the people. In this, I would recommend you to start with a public performance organization. If you have subscribed with “American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers”, “Broadcast Music, Inc.”, or “SESAC”, you can start from there. If not, then you need to meet them as soon as possible. I would say that getting a supporter at one of these organizations will be the best thing to do in songwriting success. So meet them and start your success journey from there. Many of these societies have “writer relation departments” that are connected to top talent and industry players, they can help!
Step 4: Be sure to be single-minded
As important as planning, it’s equally important for you to understand that not every time your plans are going to work. But remember, it’s absolutely okay! Don’t forget you are not the only one who experience failures. It happens to every other person in the world. When your journey of life is not going as you planned, the only thing you need to do is to be single-minded. Your persistence is what that could take you apart from the crowd which fails. However, there’s nothing wrong in altering your plans until the one that works is found. What most songwriters do is that they give up at the first failure. And, as a consequence, they are not coming to the brink of success in their lifetime. Don’t make this mistake! Life is a journey, our job is to do the BEST we can each day, let go and try again tomorrow. The path will be shown.
Step 5: Start meeting publishers
Once you are able to play your songs for the people through any or all of the public performance organizations, you can start meeting the publishers. Yes, what you are thinking is right! You can even meet song pluggers. Both the publisher and song plugger will want you to have at least ten competitive songs. However, you must also understand that it may take a little time before you can build a strong relationship, or make a deal with them. Here again, your persistence plays a major role. The more material you have to play, the more chances you have for a publisher to connect and or pitch and place your material!
Step 6: Continue to practice
This step is as important as the above-mentioned steps. A songwriter won’t be any good if he/she doesn’t practice his/her art. If you are a performing songwriter, the practice sessions should include your instruments as well. It’s true that one can achieve his/her goals only through continuous practice. You might be thinking that only natural talent will take you to kiss success. But I would say that no matter how talented you are, you can reach your success only with constant practice. This would also help to become an expert in your niche. Again, we never know what song will propel us forward or when. Our job is to keep creating the art that we want to share, the art we feel will move people and the art that moves our heart.