How to Warm-up Lyrical Leftovers


It is official now. I have been bitten by the songwriters’ bug, and am moving to the International Songwriters’ Mecca--aka--NASHVILLE! 

The worse part is the packing. If you are among the artistic anthrop-types, every garage sale or Goodwill purchase could hold an idea for a new song. But hey, you never know when that one great idea will come from holding that packed away item. The only problem is, I now have more idea items than I have garage square footage. When I tried to take the first item out for packing, a chain of a dozen more items held to come out! They held on to each other like handkerchiefs streaming out of a circus clown’s pocket!  Instantly, the hitched together items made my bedroom look like a three-ring-circus!

My lyrical writing is like that too. I sit down to flesh out what I think is a great song idea, and suddenly the stream of phrases on a page look like a circus clown’s handkerchief rope. My desk is so cluttered with these wonderful idea sheets, that it IS more like a circus performance than a location for operational writing. (Operational? —maybe; Organized? —NEVER!) When I have finished a lyric, there are at least a dozen ideas for the next songs-to-be. All of we songwriter martyrs love to gripe and grieve about how many beautiful phrases had to be cut for our lyrics to reasonable fit the melody lines suggested by malicious musicians--LOL. Our lyrical-leftovers are actually a sign that we are talented.  For out of talent and creativity comes our flow.  But how deep should we let it overflow?  

The problem is how many times can you warm a leftover?  Do they get so old they can grow green-fuzzy stuff on top? Should we keep them all until the mountain of lyrical-leftovers is larger than our house?  How do you know if your lyrical-leftover is treasure or trash?  Please help me decide!!