There used to be a day when I was running out of pages in my handy Moleskine notebook and it meant that I was writing like crazy, bursting with ideas, and pumping out song after song. Those were the days.
Somehow my Moleskine is running low on pages but the ideas have been few and far between as of late. Most of the pages recently have been populated with half-cocked ideas that never went anywhere, lists, and random doodles that came about when words weren't working for me. (Just so you know, I can't draw at all so they are some of the most ugly drawings you will ever see.)
I've been sick for the better part of a month (not a good exuse) and I've been quite frustrated with the job search and it's definitely taking a toll on me creatively. A lot of the times I can't seem to justify spending my time writing or playing my guitar when I have more important things to do. (Yet, those important things never seem to get done, hence, no job.) I also tend to forget that writing and playing should be included with those important things. I've been taking my love for music and performing for granted.
So, I feel like I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place. Well, make that a boulder and a bed of nails. That would describe a little better how I'm feeling right now.
But when it comes to songwriting a friend of mine brought up a good question at dinner last night. She wanted to know if I wrote on task or purely from inspiration. By on task I mean sitting down specifically to write based on any ideas that I have rolling in my head, title ideas that make up one of my many lists, or a song that I've been commissioned to write.
I thought it was a great question and it really made me think about how I approach my writing process. Tomorrow I'm going to post my answer to that question and explain some reasons why I feel like I'm struggling and a lot of other songwriters out there (maybe even you) have troubles writing. I don't think it will be anything close to scientific, just an opinion that will hopefully get some minds focused, including my own.
Here's to filling the dwindling pages of my notebook with some real writing.