Practice, practice…

Writing songs happens either immediately or over several centuries, for me. The problem is that I’ve only had a ukulele for about two years, and I’m not very good at it. The other problem is that I’ve never taken singing lessons, or a real poetry class. I’m relying on prose and high school theatre here, people.

That’s partially why I turned to comedy songs. Comedy songs are usually fast, so there’s no long notes for your voice to get caught on. Also, people don’t mind a semi-bad voice if the lyrics are funny. Bo Burnham won’t be in the opera any time soon. Another reason is because they’re more fun to write.

Also, I guess, my talent isn’t in music, it’s in writing. I wouldn’t want to perform a straight up song, because I’m only an average player. Below average, actually. That’s not worth applause.

I’ve always lived my life in terms of what could be worth applause, so to speak. If I don’t think I’m good at something, I wouldn’t do it. I’d practice until I was confident in it. Heavy research, hours of time, tons of bookwork…isn’t always the answer. Especially in things that require practice.

Practice-based learning is something that I do—alone. Which is why I’ve not mastered a second language. I’m afraid I’ll mess up embarrassingly, so I study the flashcards and all, and end up not speaking that much, which is vital to learning a language. Writing was a similar thing. Now I know you need peer reviewers to write well. I was stagnant through most of high school because I was too afraid to let others read my drafts.

Being an introvert is part of this. I intuitively feel that I do better on my own, that collaboration isn’t a helpful thing to my process, whatever that ‘process’ is. The thing is, that’s not true. Collaboration is what makes the world go round, and gets people jobs and food and love and art…and I just need to break out of my bubble and engage with the humming utopia of collaboration the world has become while I was looking inside myself. I know, I know…what kind of introvert am I? Voluntarily interacting with people more than necessary? It sounds daunting to me too, I know. But I gotta be brave.

After all, there’s a big world out there, and I’m only a tiny part of it.