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Does anyone have a good guideline for how to structure a daily practice for composing? This subject has been giving me trouble.

Should I work more with thematic prompts? like generate a list of different words and compose based on the thoughts i get when i see the word? should i do try to do a piece in every key? should i do a different instrument every day?

I know how to practice an instrument, I know how to practice theory... but I don't know how to practice composing! >_/p>

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Im no expert-but I think the very BEST thing you can do each and every day is to listen and watch score videos on Youtube of the kind of music you want to write.

Try and name what it is in them that you like--the gesture, and then try to emulate this gesture in your own musical voice, in your own compositions. I also find when Im doing this that hearing music I like excites me to then compose.

Otherwise for myself I never found value in simply writing exercises for their own sake--but if they are to be used as parts of a composition then that to me is very worthwhile.

The bottom line is simply to compose something EVERY day..get a routine that works for you and stick to it.

A simple routine might be:

1) Listen to something you like, and write the gesture down in words that appeals to you

2) Listen to your own work and see if its in the same ballpark, and then compose

I would also devote some time each day to what I call "seaming"--joining two different musical ideas one after the other so that it seems perfectly logical, and even inevitable the way they flow together..

I also spend a lot of time listening to the piece Im working on from beginning to end to get an idea of how it hangs together. For this I suggest NOT using a score but closing your eyes and focusing all your attention simply on the music and see if it works.

Just some thoughts...Good luck with your composing!

Thanks Bob

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