Songwriting Guide


Use this quick reference guide and refer back to the home page of for detailed explanation of each step!

Step 1

Build a song title either on your own or by using a worksheet containing theme-related words in three columns: Verbs, Nouns, and Other Words. With a strong song title and some practice, the song will eventually write itself!

Step 2

Pick an appropriate song form. In contemporary music the verse-chorus, and verse-chorus-bridge song is really popular now but don’t rule out the verse-verse-verse or verse-verse-bridge song forms.

Step 3

Use the Rhymezone website or a good rhyming dictionary together with a thesaurus to continue building the worksheet you started in Step 1. Write down related words and rhymed words in three columns on the top half of the page; verbs, nouns, and other words. Then mix and match columns to come up with original lines and write those on the bottom half of the page. Rhymezone rules!

Step 4

Create an interesting, melodic, natural sounding hook/chorus part by using the song title in it. The title works best in the first or last line of the chorus, or in both of those areas.

Step 5

Develop the verses by using words and lines from your worksheet, keeping in mind the first and last lines of verses are the most memorable ones for your listeners. Also, the lines right before the chorus can color the chorus differently each time for added interest.

Step 6

If you use a bridge, make it stand out by varying the melody, phrasing of words, and harmonic content. Take your listener into another dimension and build tension so the final chorus explodes with excitement!

Decide if and where you will add a rap, spoken word part, or instrumental to the song.

Step 7

Rewrite and polish your song! Make sure the song makes chronological sense, that it’s focused,and figure out what line(s) and/or sections to remove, replace certain words, or add words or lines.


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