I'm done with writing about pretend things, done with fiction, I want authenticity. I want the listener to feel something real when I deliver a song.
I want to use the abstract qualities of music to achieve this, I'll use metaphors and word driven allegories, tone and rhythm, performance and intent. The guitar will provide the background, my voice will tell a story, the story is the most important bit, then the melody, then the music.
Writing anything is never easy and it changes too, you can start off thinking you will write a song about one thing and a line will turn it upside down, the magic of creativity is this - how your conscious intent was to write a song about your father and it becomes a song about the loss of faith.
How to begin? The resistance is there - I procrastinate, I stop myself moving forward because a line feels wrong, I should just write the whole thing then listen out for the key moments and then allow that to come forward more, it is like painting a picture by detailing a horses hoof before knowing for certain if there is even going to be a horse in it. All of this strikes me as ridiculous but then I have had many years to write amazing songs and I think it is the lack of attention to detail that has robbed my catalogue of more sturdy, enduring music.
What I know today is that whatever song you set out to write, you have to be prepared to work.
Writing is fun, but that is only the smallest element, you need to take that joy, harness yourself to it long enough that you come up with something compelling, then you have to accept that from here on it is application of process. It helps if I think like a disciplined painter, disciplined painters don't jump straight to the effects, they have to build the painting up evenly, the outline, blocking out the shapes before teasing out the details and mixing colours. I've always loved watching good painters work, they seem so calm and in control, I like that idea - that you can work steadily towards something great.