I feel it’s important to remind ourselves as songwriters that a song’s quality – like any art – is subjective. Ultimately, time and the long view will provide a clearer perspective on whether your work is solid. Even the most successful songwriters face a lot of rejection and an almost endless supply of others’ opinions. The reality is that if you’re going to sustain a career as a songwriter, you can’t rely on anyone else’s point of view as to the level of your songs. Here are a few ways to help you to decide if your song is “good” or not.

1. You like your song no matter what anyone else says

This one is much easier said than done when you’re starting out as a songwriter. We’re so easily discouraged if our songs aren’t met with unqualified praise that even the slightest comment or criticism can convince us we’ve written a sub par song. Part of developing a thick skin is knowing when to tune out all other opinions in favor of your own positive one. 

2. Your song gets a strong reaction – positive OR negative

Songs, at their best, are written to make people feel something. The very worst response to one of our songs is a non-response. It’s infinitely better to have someone actively dislike something you’ve written because at the very least it means your song has a strong enough statement to elicit a reaction. That being said, it always feels better when your song is loved instead of hated but either response means you’re on the right track.

3. You’ve achieved the goal you set out when you sat down to write

If, in reviewing your finished song, you’re confident it communicates the message – both musically and lyrically – that you hoped to communicate, then you’ve written a good song. It doesn’t hurt to remind yourself once your song is finished why you sat down to write it in the first place. If the end result stays true to your original vision for what you’d hoped to do, then, by definition what you’ve written is good.


While it feels wonderful to have others tell you your songs are great, relying on outside opinions is, at best, risky and, at worst, dangerously discouraging. In order to find the motivation to get up every day and write songs, you’ll need to know in your own heart and mind that the work you are doing is quality and deserves to be heard.

Good Luck!

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6 responses to “Three Ways to Know If You’ve Written a Good Song”

  1. Peter Duffield says:

    Great article! Thank you!

  2. Skyler G says:

    Reflecting on all of this, I’m very confident with my music and you just helped me boost it even more.

  3. Mic summerboy says:

    Thanks for the article right now as it has rebuilt my confidence to push for more in my career.

  4. Mic summer boy says:

    Thanks for rebuilding my confidence. You’ve written this article professionally.

  5. Grant Evans says:

    I’ve written a song, but that’s it. No music to go with it as yet.
    What should my next step be?
    I’m new to all of this, I just have a weekly drum lesson.
    Any advice greatly received.


    • Hi Grant,
      First of all, congratulations on finishing your lyric. Unfortunately, until there’s a melody, it can’t be considered a song just yet.
      Your best bet is to find a musical collaborator to put a melody to your words and THEN you’ll have a song.
      After that, you and your collaborator might consider a professional recording of the song to allow you to pitch it to the music industry but first things first.

      Here are a few places to find a musical collaborator.

      Co-Writing Websites

      Hope that helps!


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