Lyric writing often involves telling stories and attempting to convey emotions in words. As a songwriter, you hope to write lyrics to paint recognisable pictures for the listener. One technique that can help with this is called "object writing."
Object writing involves choosing a physical object that signifies your song's theme or represents something important in the story you want to tell. You then write detailed descriptions of this object - how it looks, colours, sounds, smells, taste etc. The goal is to get all five senses working and bring the object to life on the page.
Some tips for using object writing in your songwriting:
- Zoom in on small details that make the object unique. Don't just say "a coffee mug". Describe the chips or any discolouration, the texture of the porcelain, the pattern of the design, the dimensions.
- Explore the object's history and imagine its personal emotional significance. Does it bear the scratches of years of use? Was it a present from someone important to you? What is the story?
- Let your description of the object inspire imagery you can incorporate into your song. Those specific details and emotions will make your lyrics unique and vivid.
- Don't feel wedded to the object itself. Use it as a creative springboard and then take your lyrics off in their own direction.
Object writing can be a very effective brainstorming tool for songwriters. By exploring what seems an innocuous object, you can unearth sensory details, stirring emotions that can lend authenticity and imagination to your songs.
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