I’ll Never Write Another Song

I’ve written before about how songs seem to come to me gift-wrapped. That is, they’ll appear out of nowhere, fully formed with a melody and a core idea, and it will take very little refining on my part to beat them into shape.

There is some truth to the idea that inspiration is spurred by simply sitting down to work. I’ve written some songs this way, like when I have a custom song to write for a wedding and the deadline is soon approaching. The downside to this approach, of course, is that some of those songs are ones that I’m not inspired by and I never play again. Some, very few, become hits.

But my best songs seem to come to me in the car or the shower or walks, when my mind is fully untethered and I am able to access parts of me that I wouldn’t otherwise be able to. And there’s a feeling each and every time that I will never be able to write another song again.

This feeling is further exacerbated by the long swaths of time that come in between songs appearing. I don’t try to write a song day, though I may start to do that soon as an experiment. I imagine it will go a bit like my deadline based songs, and that I’ll get some great ones and some throwaways. I’m guessing it will spur songs that I wasn’t expecting and will ultimately help me write more songs that go into my sets and albums. But this feeling that I’ll never write another song again still plagues me.

It’s not the same with blogging, which seems require less complex skills: every day, I simply go to my list which generally has 100-150 blog post ideas and I pick one and start to write. I have a similar list for songs, but there are extra components, like a good melody and rhythm and style, that slow this process down. It’s not just about lyrics. That would easy if it were, at least for me.

But it’s not even the complexity that slows me down. It’s the fact that I also feel this way about good days, the ones that I mark as my favorites in my journal. It almost feels, when they’re over, like they’ll never happen again, like that was the last one I’ll experience for a long time. Or that if it does happen again, it could never as good.

But of course, this is all a huge misunderstanding. I will write a song again, and I will have amazing days. The trick is that when this feeling arrives, I just accept my fate as a fire-less artist and move on. And inevitably that good song or good day comes along anyway, whether I worry about it or not. It’s no use thinking about what will or won’t happen in the future.

I should really know that by now.