How to tell if you’re any good

Because if you’re wondering if you’re any good then you’re probably not.

So let’s pretend your a kid just starting to write songs (or stories or jokes or whatever). Who’s the first person you should play your songs for to see if they like them? You.

I know you think a lot of artists hate their own stuff but if that were true they never would have shown it to anyone. So when you’re writing songs ask yourself, do I like this? Do I like singing it, do I like hearing it, am I proud of it?

When you hit that barrier and crush it you’ll know. When you write your first pretty okay tune you will feel like showing to people.

Don’t run to the nearest open mic just yet. In fact never run to an open mic they mostly suck, if you find a good one cherish but still act cool for fuck sake.

You want to play your exciting new creation for friends and family first. Then be crushed by their total lack of give-a-shit. Yeah, I know, it’s because they have terrible taste and don’t ever want you to be happy. And because you’re still not any good.

Keep writing though little Bobby-sue your time is gonna come. Your friends and family will let you down easy, actually they’ll straight up lie to you but don’t fall into that trap.

The next barrier you’ll know you’ve crossed when you play a song for your closest and they gush about, they thought it was a cover, oh and you’ve become so handsome too. They’re just as excited as you, because they thought you’d never write anything decent.

When people are going out of their way to tell you how much they like a song without being asked, telling you which of their favorite artists you sound a bit like (and don’t get any less grateful when it’s someone you hate because it will be) then you’re ready to start playing in front of strangers and having your feelings crushed by them instead.

Bleak I know. But some of those strangers will become your friends and you’ll share songs and ideas and grow off of each other, learn from each other’s mistakes, secretly hate each other’s successes. And then my friend you are a writer.

And you’ll still be racked with doubt most of the time. But that’s what keeps you turning out quality stuff. Never lose that.


Singer/songwriter, jerk.

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