What’s better than a song prompts list of “more things” to get your brain working and go somewhere you didn’t imagine?

These prompts can help generate some song or poem starters you can relate to quickly and easily.  You’ll spend less time trying to manufacture a scene, characters or circumstances, and get right into the writing!

As a twist on the song prompt, you can write a poem using one of the prompts and then convert the poem to a song!

This is also a great way to focus on your lyric first.


Tips To Get You Started:


Start by free styling to get some thoughts down
Don’t worry about a song structure or rhyme. Write down whatever pops into your head associated with the prompt.
Circle the words you think are interesting
Now write a single line saying what you think the song idea is.
Go ahead and note a structure
It can be something as simple as verse/chorus/verse/chorus/chorus or verse/verse/verse.  You don’t have to stick with it – but it will give you a framework so you can focus on the lyrics.
Choose some chords you're comfortable with
Use those while you’re creating the lyric, or don’t use an instrument and sing the melody.  You can always make the chord progression different later.
Find a quiet spot and focus!


1 Things in a detective novel
2 Things in a cheesy romance novel
3 Things that make you late
4 Things that happen early
5 Things that come in cans/boxes
6 Things that come in 3s/pairs
7 Things you can see from a car/bus window
8 Things you do not deserve
9 Things in the glove box
10 Things at a camp site
11 Things you deserve


Song Prompt Example: Things That Work


OK, so Guy Clark changed “things” to “stuff” and never actually used a prompt – but, this is a great example of how a “thing” or “stuff” prompt could turn into a great song. There’s no better song about an old blue shirt.

Here’s my favorite version of Guy Clark’s “Stuff That Works” from Jack Ingram:



More Song Prompts: