I remember when I first started writing songs. It was a fast process. Well, maybe not fast but faster than I write a song now. I would come up with an idea, get a title, make up a melody for the chorus, add lyrics for the chorus and the verse and presto- a song. Not always a good song but none the less, it was a song.
I would send my songs to NSAI (Nashville Songwriting Association International) to have my latest hit evaluated. Needless to say, None of them were hits. They were just songs. They would tell me that I needed to rewrite the song. They would point out areas of opportunities. Here are some of the areas that I struggled with and some that I still struggle with.
The meter in the verses needs to match from verse to verse. What is meter? Meter is the feeling you get when you read a Dr. Seuss book like Cat in a hat. I loved reading these books cause I could feel the groove in the writing. That groove is the meter. I sometimes have to count it out. I sometimes have to count it out. That sentence has eight beats. If that is the first line in the first verse, then the first line in my second verse should have eight beats also. I couldn't change it to, I hate counting out all of the beats in a lyric, in the second verse. This line would have 13 beats. Oops! Now it doesn't sing right.
Other examples of errors I had to correct were the chorus not lifting (or singing) higher than the verses. The bridge not doing anthing different than the verses or the chorus. Bad ryhming, no rhyming, or too much rhyming. And the llist goes on and on.
Over time I finally learned the art of rewriting and I enjoy it. The problem is now I can rewirte too much. The great thing is it gives me lots of ideas to choose from. Maybe too many ideas to choose from but this is part of the process. I have been know to find new titles, throw out part or all of the verses, change the chorus, and search for the songwriting pot of gold in every song. Sometimes all I find is a rainbow and I will put that in the song instead of the gold. lol
So rewriting a song can be a curse and a blessing. You just have to figure out how to rewrite, what makes the song better, and try different ideas until you find the very best one. Not all gold nuggets are the same size. So you gotta work to get the best ones. Keep on wirting and rewriting. It is a great asset to have in your songwriting toolbox.