If you were to ask any writer for advice, chances are the first word out of his or her mouth would be “read”.
It is a longstanding fact in the word of putting pen to paper that the more you read, the better your writing will be. While many attribute this way of thinking to people who solely want to write novels, the same advice is true for someone that wants to craft songs for a living.
The act of writing is often referred to as a muscle due to the fact that the more you practice, the better you get. Like any good workout, writing needs rest, and that is where reading comes into play. When you read, you are allowing for that writing muscle to grow and solidify by feeding it great amounts of worthy content to learn from.
And yes, the type of content you absorb does matter. Go for quality over quantity in your reading efforts, and your writing will thank you tenfold. Challenge yourself with in-depth stories that make you use problem solving skills hand in hand with your creative way of thinking. Are you looking to add more personality to your songs? Consider reading biographies of influential people to help gain a deeper understanding of someone other than just yourself.
The act of reading helps open up one’s mind to, not only new vocabulary, but also different rhythms that words can be used in. Think about it – each author has a unique voice, just like every songwriter. When you expose yourself to new writers, you are able to learn and absorb a new tone or structure that words can occupy. When you hear and notice these various styles, you are able to expand your own way of thinking and doing.
When you read great books, you will write great songs. Strengthen your creative abilities and build your writing muscle by continually thumbing through chapters that inspire you. You will quickly notice an improvement in your craft with benefits that will last a creative lifetime.