Nine Quick Cures for Writer’s Block

Write as soon as possible after you wake up or go to bed if you are really tired.

Your brain goes into a hypnagogic mode when “half-asleep”. This is a great time to get creative because your brain’s thought processes can change as you are close to sleeping. Studies show that this is a state where you are more open to mental stimulation and more sensitive. You’ll also be more open to ideas and have more flexibility – ideal for creating things out of nothing.

Use the “Bowie” method.

Legend says that David Bowie (RIP) would take words from books, cut them up, and then throw them all in a hat. Then, he’d pick some random cuttings and use them to inspire lyrics. Grab some secondhand magazines or books for a cheap way to shop!

Do something new.

Have you ever tried seaweed? Try it. Try a new route, go on a walk, or speak to someone outside your normal social circle. We build new connections in our brains when we do something different. This can help us get inspired and jump-start the creative side of our brains.


This is a way to combine two ideas that are not necessarily related. Use stream-of-consciousness style thinking to juxtapose words that you wouldn’t usually put together. This can result in some very interesting, if not so simple, lyrics. It can also inspire a musical landscape.

Jazz is a great choice.

Free jazz has no standard song structure. Free jazz, or any other genre of music, can be refreshing for your brain and allow you to absorb unusual ideas.

Jam with someone new

Have you been playing in the same band for some time? You might be interested in jamming with other musicians just for fun. You will be challenged by working with different styles and players. You don’t have to know anyone to jam with, so why not attend a local open mic or musical event? You will be able to meet new people.

You don’t even have to jam with musicians. You can play some tunes on the pot & pan drums with your child cousin or invite a friend to ‘jam’ with you.


Been sitting in your studio too long? Sometimes, great ideas can come from moments of clarity. You will feel clearer and more positive after a run, brisk walking, or any workout that lasts 20-30 minutes. You can also exercise outdoors to get mental clarity.

Stop procrastinating

This is a huge ‘DUH! It’s possible. You need to put pen to paper or use your fingers to create something. It doesn’t need to be perfect. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Getting back to the action and rhythm of creating will keep your practice sharp. Nike may have been on to something with their slogan ” Just Do It”.

This leads to…

Stop trying to be “good.”

Your procrastination or writers’ block could be explained by a fear of failing up, also known as perfectionism. If there is one thing art will never achieve, it is perfection. Ask any artist about their greatest work, and they’ll likely tell you that they wish they had done better.

Writing to a purpose is the single thing that kills creativity. Even if it seems impossible, it can be as important as saying, “I want other people like this.” Creativity should be derived from your gut, the heart, and the right brain, not your judgmental, critical left brain. Try to get rid of rational thought at the beginning of music writing. This type of thinking can be left for later when you are ready to fine-tune your work.

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