“Write what you know” seems like a limiting idea, though, doesn’t it? I always hear that phrase and think….What if I don’t know anything?! Is it possible that someone could really not “know” enough to write a song?
Have faith in yourself! Have you ever been devastatingly sad? Wonderfully happy? Totally desperate? “Writing what you know” isn’t in the events, it’s in the emotions. You probably “know” more than you realize! Let those feelings drive your lyrics.
There are many truths in life, and we all learn them in our own time, in our own way. Use your lyrics to share what you have learned about the world, about the heart. This guarantees your personal connection to the song, which makes writing it much more rewarding! It also allows you to make the song different and original. Your perspective in life is, after all, uniquely your own.
Don’t worry yourself trying to make sure people will relate to your ideas. If you write authentically about something that moves you, your listeners will understand and connect to what you are trying to say.
The trick is figuring out how to tie the feeling into the details of the lyrics. Maybe specific examples from your own life can help you lock into the feeling you are trying to communicate. Maybe you prefer to focus on the stories of other people’s lives for inspiration. Use whatever works for you! And remember: sometimes, real life is stranger, and more interesting, than fiction!