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Lyric Writing Creatively

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Lyric Writing Creatively

(post #2 will show a complete lyric)


Now, in my opinion, the point of all this is to allow your subliminal thoughts to emerge.


Some of the best advice I ever came across concerned writing fiction. It works beautifully for lyrics too. It is simple and this is how it works:


1/ The first thing you have to do is to write.


Response: Huh? Write what? I cant write before I have thought.

Yes you can. Don’t just stare at an empty page and shrug your shoulders, just start to write. It doesn’t matter if it’s all nonsense. Start writing and keep going.


I am going to do that now.



START 14.28pm (its windy outside and tarpaulins are flapping about)


Brief but feeble. Covers are lashed down. The wind tries to lift them but they are secure. Wind is persistant. Wind is a power not to be underestimated. Wind is patient. Patience is virtuous and virtue is a limited commodity in santa Barbara. The car was open top. The wind doubled to sensation of speed along the desert road. Desolation looked pretty that day. Who’ld have thought? Quite soon the wind changed and we outran it giggling and shouting. It would be all the same if it were dark or cold. The honeymoon was all that mattered for a few hours. Me and Kate. Kate and me. Us.

14.32pm STOP

(I was interrupted before I had finished)

Subliminal thoughts: Bert Jansch’s Santa Barbara Honeymoon album. Wind taking on the eastern attributes of water. Kate.


Resumed 14.46pm (someone here had to face riding home in the rain without full weather gear)


Futuristic sumo guy on a bike. Hi vis jacket. Hi vis nappy. Riding on salted roads braving the wind driven rain again and again. He’ll never beat the wind. Windcheaters should be prosecuted or should they? Who’s being cheated anyway? Any and all and nearly every mothers son and daughter’s choice will out a villain in the end. Happy ever after, after the rain. And the rain only relents when the wind concurs this afternoon. For ever disqualifies never. Ever & never are false words because they are relative and relatives. Outlaws if you please. Please phone before I have to move away from the phone. The phone is here. The phone is now. In an hour it may be too late anyhow. You know you should, but theres many a slip twixt thought and phone. Phone n thought my polly. I did all of this parrot fashion. I never tire of parrots and they are always in fashion. When time fashioned a parrot, the parrot became a prisoner. A prize in flesh and flesh in a cage. Not even time off for good behaviour. Is that what they mean when they say ‘doing bird’? Charlie Parker was at least dead before his sound was imprisoned in vinyl. No he wasn’t. He consented and never relented unless he repented upon his undone bed. Parrot Lives! Bird Lives! You’ll never imprison a quail in a cage even though they are easier to catch than parrots. Maybe the quali has it easier? A shot gun blast from the overprivelidged puffers in weekend tweed and guffaws. A round of bored shouts to rouse the beaters and never a parrot in sight.


15.05pm END

Subliminal thoughts: Hunting. Breeding. Class. Involuntary movement and providence. Bebop. John Coltrane. Polly. The penguin report (something else I had written).


OK so this is the process



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This is one from July 2013 and it produced/informed a lyric on the 18-Feb-2015.



Potatoes are brown until they get washed. Wash the potatoes and turn the clinging earth to mud. Let it trickle away to wherever mud goes. Where does the mud go? Into a system of pipes until it reaches the sea. Does seaweed use mud? Who would win in a fight? King Edward of Jim Kelp? I love the way the wave sway on the seashore when I pass the shore at noon. I would pass that way more often if the opportunity would present itself. What is the attraction of the sea? As children we throw stones into it. Ancient stones and pebbles. Rounded by the washing. Washing the corners off and clean until the stones are round and comfy to hold before throwing them into the massive stretch of brine again. Skip a stone across the water. Let it fly for once.

If you are a kid, yould throw the potatoes in the sea too. It would confuse the potato. It would confound potato logic. Any and all vegetable carbs became confounded by the ocean.

I used to eat potato soup on Fridays. My wife would make it every week. Its Friday now and I aint eating potato soup. I’m not happy. Bring me potato soup again darling and I promise to notice whateverthehell it is I didn’t notice before. I now notice the curtains. I now notice the floor, most of all though I think I notice the door. :END



AFTERTHOUGHTS: (12 minutes)

Potatoes. A rhyming challenge? How about leeks?

I am not eating leeks today and I don’t like it.

Because I aint too happy when I aint eating leeks

Pie / by buy cry dry die fly fry guy high lie my nigh sigh try tie why


1st draft (30 minutes) NOT reproduced here 18-02-2015



A LYRIC:  (about 75 minutes). it will stay in this form until I’m ready to use it. 18-02-2015



Friday Fish Pie    2ND REVISION


I used to eat fish pie on Friday. My wife she made it just for me

Its Friday now and I aint eating fish pie. And I’m not happy. I’m not happy like I should be

I got a bad feeling that won’t go away, and I used to be so carefree

I used to eat fish pie ‘til the 4th of July, and now the fish pie is eating me.


I used to love to see the way the breakers, rise & break upon the shore,

Due to circumstance, give me the chance to pass along that way some more

but my feet got wet and I ruined my shoes, they used to be number 9s and now they’re a number 2

now I got sand in between my toes, and everywhere I go the sand goes too


and all really I needed was my Friday fish pie.

Yes all I needed was my Friday fish pie.


Will you come back home again darlin’, every day I miss you more.

I promise to notice WHATEVER-THE-HELL-IT-WAS, I never noticed before.

Cause now I notice the closed curtains, and now I notice the mess on the floor,

But most of all, most of all, I think I notice the door.


Well I know I didn’t always listen, when the TV set was on

So why blame me and not the TV, when it was you that turned the TV on

And I know you tried tell me something, and I started to listen to you

But you said that was it, and packed up & quit, before the football was halfway through


But did you once think about my Friday fish pie?

No you didn’t think about my Friday fish pie.



18-feb-2015 RZS


This last version will change again when it’s cobbled together with some music. So far there is none planned.


Friday Fish Pie: thoughts.


The redneck (is how I think of the narrator) drove his wife away and never understood anything except for his loss. The fish pie ended on the day his wife’s independence (the 4th of July).



Ok, that was the inside of my head for a short while. Well done if you lasted this long.



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Take this method you are describing, keep expanding and teaching as you go until you have fifty or sixty pages and then market it as a short on overcoming writer's block, or how to develop ideas for your next book or song and publish it as an ebook and you'll have a success on your hands. 


great idea

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  • 2 weeks later...

Nice response. Thanks to all.


I have laid this out with examples to encourage people to try out the method for themselves (theres nothing to lose).


I dont expect anyone to reveal their writing as I have. It wasnt easy for me to go public with my examples.


But if anyone does give this a try, come back to let us know whether it was productive or not.

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Very cool, Rudi.  I do something similar without wriritng things down  (at least at first) as I sing while coming up with music.


Fish pie?  One of you enterprising Brits should sponsor a "Britain for Three Months Diet" for rich, fat Americans who'd find your cuisine so appetite-killing they'd lose weight by default while on that side of The Pond. ;)


I gather you dont have that then? baked fish topped with potato?


When I was in the US in the late 70s, I was amazed at how much better the food generally was (apart from McDonalds).

SInce then the UK food & cooking standard has improved a lot (apart from McDonalds).


I was in New York last year. Its roughly even now I'd say.


If you think fish pie sounds naff, you should try the following

black pudding


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