If you need help overcoming a creative block, RM‘s methods might help you out.
In an interview for HYBE Insight, HYBE’s cultural museum, BTS‘s leader was asked about his songwriting experience, including how he writes lyrics and handles writer’s block.
RM used his mixtape track “Seoul,” a song about his love-hate relationship with the city, as an example of how he overcomes creative roadblocks. RM looked at his song as if it was a story and started by establishing the setting. Once he had chosen Seoul, RM cast himself as the main character, then looked for a “conflict” he could explore.
From there, he delved into his personal experiences, recalling his first impressions of the city and how he felt when he moved there in his teens; at the time, RM both liked and disliked Seoul.
Once RM chose the song’s central conflict, the rest started to fall into place. He created the melody and lyrics that matched the beat. As someone who usually begins his songwriting process with the written word, RM said that he is always collecting bits and pieces of ideas that he might use someday.
It could be a theme, a word, or a phrase. He believes that it’s important to always be on the lookout for these small, fleeting moments of inspiration that he stores in his memos and memory.
Even during the interview, RM was paying attention to his surroundings. As an example, he pointed out how a single camera lens has the power to show him to millions of eyes. This is the type of idea he would file away to include as a lyric or turn into an entire song, in the future.
For a talented writer like RM, the possibilities truly are endless! Listen to “Seoul” here: