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HOWDY SONGWRITERS, I’ve put a pause on this workshop until late summer/early fall so that I can put my full energy into both my April 27 Zoom concert, and my Songwriting Workshop. When I have a new date for the workshop, I’ll post here. If you think you may be interested, please email me and I’ll send you first notice of the new workshop date. ~ MT

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MICHAEL TOMLINSON presents, “How I Write My Songs.” 

Live on Zoom Saturday April 20 at 11am - 4pm Pacific


Bring your instrument if you wish. Ahead of time I’ll tell you how to get decent sound on Zoom. This is not an all day open mic. Some may want to share, others may not. It’s a day of working together to discover new ways to express ourselves musically, in melody and lyrics.  


LAST THURSDAY AFTER MY MEDITATION CLASS WAS OVER, I got out my guitar to play while I still had the sound set up. For two hours I played a song I’d been writing several months ago, but hadn’t touched since. The lyrics started pouring through me, the guitar part just magically seemed to get better and better. I had my microphone hooked up which made it even more fun to sing, hearing the reverb elongate my notes and give an exciting feel to my voice. 


I recorded the song, unfinished as it is, just singing the existing verses and chorus, repeating some. The song recorded was over six minutes long, not that I want it to be that, but honestly, I just could not stop singing. I had found the groove of that song and now I was loving the phrasing, the syncopation of words and music. I sent it to a friend that night. I almost never send an unfinished song to anyone, but I was so excited to almost have that song finished. A few minutes later she answered back, “What is this!? This is fantastic! You never told me you were writing this one, what  brought this up?” “A guitar was in my lap” would have been the best answer. That night I went to bed listening over headphones to and got very little real sleep. I’ve done that three or four more times since. That’s how excited I still get about a new song being born.


Why am I telling you this? Because after many decades of songwriting I am still thrilled to do it! How is it that I’ve been allowed to do this all these years? So many songs that are beautiful, rich with life, filled with love and friendships, Natural Elements, seasons, weather, wind, rain and bluster have come through me. This is what I want to share with you. Whether you want to write your first song or have been writing for decades and consider yourself a fine songwriter already, this workshop will inspire you. It’s been happening with all my workshops, the ones on Creativity in Life, the ones on Creative Writing, they all have awakened surprises in the people who attend. When it comes to songwriting, Surprise can be your greatest thrill. 


We’ll actually do some writing in small parts of songs — using ideas and prompts that by design make it so you will not sit there thinking, “Gosh, I don’t know what to write.” Or “But what if people think the things I’m writing about are going on in my life?” Ha! That’s the classic one. Being worried about what the people around you will think when they hear you sing a new song. Only one thing to do about that — tell ‘em the truth, you have to write what comes through. Sometimes there are elements of true personal experience, but mostly it’s a blur of dreams and ideas, memories and the lifelong moments of yearning we all have. Songs would never be written without that. 


I will show you with my own songs how I wrote them. Why I did it a certain way. In some cases, I actually have the original “song-idea” recordings— and will play you the original inspired snippets where I first sang a melody — and then lived with it for months or even years, before it became a song you may know well. 


This is for every level of songwriting. It’s not about making hits. It’s about expressing what wants to come through you. Often, it turns out that you needed to write certain songs just because they were trying to be born through you. Every one can write a good song. They just don’t know that at first. I’ll help you with that. I hope you will join us on Sat April 20. It’s going to be a deeply moving and highly entertaining time. 

              ~ Michael Tomlinson

TO BE RESCHEDULED later this summer/early fall.  If you think you may be interested,

email me and you'll receive first notice of new date. ~ MT

Email me any ol' time at

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