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The secret to Taylor Swift’s writing process is… cool pens.

Katie Yee

September 21, 2022, 2:22pm

We here at Literary Hub dot com are huge Taylor Swift fans. We are awaiting her new album with bated breath. We are listening to all the old stuff (Taylor’s version) in anticipation. We will find literally any excuse to write about her. I mean, she’s arguably become one of our most literary celebrities.

Last night, our girl stood on a stage in Nashville to accept the Songwriter-Artist of the Decade award. She thanked family and friends, quoted the great Nora Ephron (“Everything is copy”), and shared a secret “dorky” part of her writing process… Ready For It?

 I also have, in my mind, secretly, established genres categories for lyrics I write. Three of them, to be exact. They are affectionately titled Quill Lyrics, Fountain Pen Lyrics, and Glitter Gel Pen Lyrics.

I know this sounds confusing but I’ll try to explain. I came up with these categories based on what writing tool I imagine having in my hand when I scribbled it down, figuratively. I don’t actually have a quill. Anymore. I broke it once when I was mad.

Honestly, this makes complete and total sense to me, and I feel like if you love her as much as I do, you can probably break down her songs into these categories all on your own, but she did go on to elaborate: “I categorize certain songs of mine in the Quill style if the words and phrasings are antiquated, if I was inspired to write it after reading Charlotte Brontë.” (Her example for this type of writing is “Ivy.”)

She describes the Fountain Pen Style as “a modern storyline or references, with a poetic twist […] Placing yourself and whoever is listening right there in the room where it all happened.” (See: “All Too Well.”)

And, finally, we have the Glitter Gel Pen category: “frivolous, carefree, bouncy, syncopated perfectly to the beat. Glitter Gel Pen lyrics don’t care if you don’t take them seriously because they don’t take themselves seriously.” (As in, “Shake It Off.”)

Writers know All Too Well how hard it can be to put pen to paper. So, there you have it! That’s how Taylor Swift fills the Blank Space.

[h/t The Hollywood Reporter]

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