->''I've been through the desert on a horse with no name,\\
It felt good to be out of the rain''

Many writers listen to music while writing. And, hey, why not have built-in background music in your story?

->''[[Theatre/TheYeomenOfTheGuard I have a song to sing, O]]\\
Sing me your song, O''

Unfortunately, since most fanfiction doesn't include an audio component, writers are frequently left having to copy and paste the lyrics directly into the text.

->''The samovar is full of tea\\
You stare unblinkingly at me\\
While your car waits in the freezing rain.''

When it's done right this can really benefit the story, especially if the lyrics really fit with whatever is happening in the story. Unfortunately, it can just as easily detract from the story, especially if the readers don't actually recognize the song. Posting lyrics from a Music/MichaelJackson or [[Music/TheBeatles Beatles]] song is one thing, but posting lyrics from the writer's favorite indie band runs a much bigger risk that the reader won't actually recognize the song. Alternately, the reader might simply not ''like'' whatever song the writer is using, and it ends up spoiling the mood anyway.

->''But every time I tried to tell you\\
The words just come out wrong.\\
So I have to say I love you\\
In a song.''

There are three main ways of writing a song fic. One method is to turn the fic into a kind of musical, and just have a character actually listening to or performing a particular song that fits the mood of the story or scene. Sometimes this fits in neatly enough, and is frequently a way that LiveActionTV shows intersperse famous background music - namely, by setting the scene in a bar or club and having the actual musicians performing onstage. If the story isn't a musical, a chapter may be set during a bar's karaoke night, which features one character singing a song specifically to another; the rampant abuse of SuspiciouslyAproposMusic involved in this one is part of why so many people hate it.

The second is to intersperse the lyrics in the text. In a basic Songfic they are italicised them to distinguish them from the rest of the story, and can disrupt the flow, betraying a low-quality fanfic. In the more skilled examples they may choreograph the song to the events passing, which can add to the drama if done at a major [[WhamLine Wham Moment]]. However some writers may choreograph so that the scene becomes a kind of music video, advising when to start playing with the characters themselves ''speaking'' the words to the song rather than sing it. The ultimate goal is to have the song meld with the scene, often right down to the timing of introductions and solos. It's a complicated business that requires the writer to listen to the song over and over while writing.

The third way is to actively rewrite the lyrics of a song and replace them with lyrics of the author's creation. There's a very good chance readers won't recognize it unless you specifically spell out which song or band you're "covering", so to speak, and even then it could just as easily detract from the experience. Some fanfiction is nothing ''but'' Song Fic, essentially rewriting the lyrics into a poem that fits whatever franchise they're writing about.

Sooner or later you'll run into somebody who really does know how to write songs, and has composed their own lyrics to their own tune, but since it's in (italics) text, you can't see the tune. Guess you'll just have to find your own tune.

This trope is a classic example of how TropesAreTools and TropesAreNotBad. While Song Fics are deplored by some people and major sites like [[http://www.fanfiction.net/guidelines/ Fanfiction.Net]] forbid the use of non-public domain lyrics due to copyright issues (not that they enforce it much), they can be highly effective if they're used correctly and can add more depth to a story than you might think.

->''[[AsLongAsItSoundsForeign Quando para mucho mi amore de felice corazón]]\\
[[TrueArtIsIncomprehensible Mundo paparazzi mi amore chicka ferdy parasol]]\\
[[Music/TheBeatles Presto obrigado tanta mucho]] [[VideoGame/{{Portal}} cake and eat it]] [[WordSaladLyrics carousel.]]''*

Compare VirtualSoundtrack.
* An example of the third variety: ''[[http://www.accessdenied-rms.net/rwb.shtml We Belong]]'', a ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'' Song Fic by troper @/LooneyToons, set around the song of the same name by Music/PatBenatar. (And written in 1998, before songfics wore out their welcome.)
** More recently, @/LooneyToons used Meredith Brooks' "Bitch" as the framework around which to lay out some [[http://www.accessdenied-rms.net/dw5vid.shtml foreshadowing]] for the ''Manga/AhMyGoddess'' story he was writing at the time.
** And in a triple play, [[JustifiedTrope justified]] in @/LooneyToons' MegaCrossover fic ''Fanfic/DrunkardsWalk'', whose central character has a superpower that turns songs he listens to into other powers.
* An example of the second variety: ''[[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/2741567/1/ Captured! The Zutara Musical!]]'' is a songfic from ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' fandom that uses various Aimee Mann songs in a dedication to a certain ship.
* FanFic writers shoehorned the Train song "Meet Virginia" into countless Franchise/HarryPotter fanfics involving Ginny Weasley.
* During the height of both their popularity, Savage Garden songs were common in ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing'' fanfiction, particularly the song "Crash and Burn".
* There is an AU ''Manga/InuYasha'' fanfiction where the chapter that dealt with Kagome's FreakOut of UnstoppableRage of [[AGodAmI unreal proportions]] had alternate paragraphs dedicated to the Evanescence song "Bring Me To Life," because the author just couldn't believe how appropriate the song was to her story.
* A FukuFic challenge generator had "turn on the radio and copy down the song currently being played" as one of the randomly chosen options for how to start your fic.
* Not quite fanfic, but a certain type of freeform text roleplayer will do this with every single post, as they believe it's creative and provides atmosphere
* [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/4928150/1/Songs_of_the_Space_Girl This fic]] demonstrates both the 'character singing' types as well as the 'interspersed italics' version.
* [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/14449/1/Embryonic_Eclipse Embryonic Eclipse]] is an [[SubbingVersusDubbing anti-dub]] ''Anime/SailorMoon'' fanfic written to rectify a complaint the author had with another fic: a DarkFic entitled "The Dark Side Of The Moon", which contained no other references to Music/PinkFloyd. This fic makes up for it with large amounts of references to the band, quoting a song in its entirety, and naming all the chapters after the album's tracklist.
* Played with in ''Literature/GodelEscherBachAnEternalGoldenBraid''. It has dialogues between each chapter that are named after musical works by J. S. Bach. There was at least one where the characters were listening to, and talking about, the piece the dialogue was based on.
* {{Invoked}} in ''Fanfic/ThoseLackingSpines'':
--> Xuxastell lifted the pen from the paper and regarded her poem with a discerning eye, quite proud of the misery she had evoked in it until she realized that it was actually the chorus of the song "Angels" by Within Temptation, currently playing on loop on her iPod.
* The song ''Closer'' by Music/NineInchNails is a frequent choice for {{Lemon}} fics because of the lyrics. Specifically, the "I Wanna Fuck You Like An Animal" portion of the lyrics. However, this is MisaimedFandom since ''Closer'' is meant to be about a self-loather using sex as an escape, a way he can delude himself into thinking he's somebody else.
** Of course, the ''actual'' meaning of ''Closer'' can be useful for writing {{Angst}}. Take, for instance, [[http://xmen.adultfanfiction.net/story.php?no=600090653 this]] (NotSafeForWork) Franchise/XMen SlashFic. So yes, not all uses of ''Closer'' in a Song Fic are MisaimedFandom.
** "Closer" and Julia Eklar's "Terminus Est" have both been used in KnightsOfTheOldRepublic fanfics for Atton Rand [[spoiler: in regards to the Jedi woman he tortured, and later mercy-killed]].
* There is a rather elegant ''Manga/CardcaptorSakura'' version of this in ''[[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/1612626/1/The_bUniverse_b_is_Resting_in_My_bArms_b The Universe is Resting in My Arms]]''. The lyrics flow almost seamlessly into the story.
* Not exactly a fanfic... or a song, for that matter, but Creator/RichardCorben & RichMargopoulos' ''HauntOfHorror'' has several stories where the panels are juxtaposed with poetry from Creator/EdgarAllanPoe or Creator/HPLovecraft. One particularly amusing example would be Poe's ''Israfel'' on a story about a GangstaRap beef.
* The ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' / ''VideoGame/EliteBeatAgents'' crossover ''[[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/3695862/1/To_Each_A_Tempo To Each A Tempo]]'' has at least three Song Fic chapters, [[JustifiedTrope which makes sense, as they're set during EBA missions.]] The fic also [[WaxingLyrical slips other song lyrics into the dialogue]] at several points, such as when the Judge very briefly {{rickroll}}s the court.
* A ''comedic'' use of Song Fic was Bruinhilda's [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/207196/1/Too_Sexy "I'm Too Sexy."]] The song in question is blasting over the music system of what turns out to be exactly the ''wrong'' kind of establishment...
* Song Fics are obviously popular in franchises based on musicals, such as ''Wicked'':
** [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/3889768/1/Who_Wants_To_Live_Forever Who Wants To Live Forever]]
** [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5603477/1/Bring_my_soldier_home Bring My Soldier Home]]
** '[[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6704976/1/Under_Your_Spell Under Your Spell]]'
* The ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' fanfic [[http://www.equestriadaily.com/2011/05/story-crimps-and-prance.html Crimps and Prance]] climaxes in a scene where Cheerilee goes to a nightclub with some friends, and dances to Echoing Green's version of "The Safety Dance".
* Another Friendship is Magic fanfic, the infamous FanFic/RainbowFactory, intersperses the lyrics of the WoodenToaster song 'Rainbow Factory' throughout the story. But it works here, since the fic is actually inspired by the song itself, which was about how the weather factory in Cloudsdale had some dark ominous secret behind how it makes rainbows. But where the song was very vague about exactly what goes on at the titular factory, instead saying that it's simply "Where your fears and horrors come true" and "Not a single soul gets through", the fic explains exactly what the Rainbow Factory's dark secret is, in all its gory detail.
** Pinkie Pie breaks into song in numerous otherwise lyricless fics - just like she does in canon.
* In the Merlin fanfic [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/6803557/1/ OHMYGODIMONFIRE]], the author makes fun of songfics by writing several oneshots set to ridiculous music, such as the song in the title. As the author says in the Author's Note:
--> "You know what irritates me? Songfics. No offense to those of you who write them..."
* ''Series/{{Glee}}'', being a show about a high school show-choir, is practically made for Song Fic of the performing version. The quality varies.
* [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5782108/9/Harry_Potter_and_the_Methods_of_Rationality Chapter 9]] of Fanfic/HarryPotterAndTheMethodsOfRationality contains a spoof of the ''Franchise/{{Ghostbusters}}'' theme. Chapter 10 contains an apology for chapter 9.
-->It honestly didn't occur to me - although it seems obvious in retrospect - that many readers would have massively bad associations to songs in fanfics. All I can do is apologize and promise not to do it again. I'm afraid, however, that since ''this'' chapter was already written, you will have to sit through the Sorting Hat singing its version of Evanescence's "My Immortal", which has never happened before.
* The ''Manga/DeathNote'' fic ''FanFic/ACureForLove'' is set to the discography of ''Music/TheSmiths''. Each chapter begins with an italic block of lyrics that are a thematic to the chapter and the titles of each chapter are named after songs titles.
* ScriptFic ''Fanfic/CalvinAndHobbesTheSeries'' sometimes does this, often over a {{montage}}.
** Another ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes'' example is ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/10903627/1/But-Hobbes-There-s-Snow-Outside But Hobbes, There's Snow Outside]]'' which spoofs "But Baby, It's Cold Outside" and is about [[MrImagination Calvin]] trying to convince [[ImaginaryFriend Hobbes]] to let him play in the snow.
* A curious example is the ''Manga/DeathNote'' fic ''Requiem'' by firelordzuko, which is at a songfic based on the [[OminousLatinChanting Greek and Latin lyrics]] of the traditional Catholic Mass for the Dead (or Requiem Mass). The music is the Requiem in d-minor by Music/WolfgangAmadeusMozart. The plot follows Near at L's funeral, where Mozart's Requiem is performed.
* Not quite a fanfic, but there doesn't seem to be any other way to classify it - ''[[Fanfic/TwentyFourTheMusical 24: The Musical]]'' is a fan-made musical version of ''Series/TwentyFour'' released as [=MP3s=] to the Internet, along with a music video version of one of the songs
* The DeconstructiveParody, "[[Fanfic/TheConversionBureau The Conversion Bureau: Metal Ripper]]" has the lyrics of {{Music/Sabaton}}'s [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZm4zseMok0 Primo Victoria]] complete with Youtube links at the end where the group defeats Celestia.
** Less obvious are the links to Youtube of the respective songs whenever a spell is cast using a lyric taken straight from the music in question.
* ''Fanfic/TotalDramaIslandByGilbertAndSullivan'' takes the song fic concept to [[UpToEleven reality warping levels]]. Instead of just one song, itís over 70 percent of the total verse content from a whole series of 14 light operas. The thousands upon thousands of lines of Creator/GilbertAndSullivan lyrics are collected in a separate section with [[FootnoteFever a cross-referencing system]] that allows the reader to quickly jump back and forth between the episode synopses and the lyrics. The overall effect is to turn the canon story arc of ''WesternAnimation/TotalDrama Island'' into a comic opera.
* While not a fanfic per say(though it was originally a WoW parody)''WebComic/LookingForGroup'' periodically has character periodically break into song, such as Richard singing ''Never gonna give you up'' by Rick Astley [[http://www.lfgcomic.com/page/144/ 144]].
* The ''WesternAnimation/MonstersInc'' fanfic ''Fanfic/AngelasPetMonster''. Moreso in the later installments.
* The MLP AlternateUniverse known as ''Fanfic/TheCadanceverse'' is nothing ''but'' Songfics; including a ponified version of ''Opera/{{Carmen}}'' replacing ''[[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS1E22ABirdInTheHoof A Bird in the Hoof]]''.
* An {{enforced}} {{subversion}} comes in ''FanFic/TheFanmakeBlooperSeries'''s first installment: ''Sleeping Blooper'', in which a businessman actually stops Facilier from singing his VillainSong, as the terms and conditions of Fanfiction.net bans song fics.
* In ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/10906194/5/The-Rise-of-Fireclan The Rise of FireClan]]'', the [[ImprobableAge kitten]] protagonist sings ''[[WebVideo/DoctorHorriblesSingAlongBlog Slipping]]'' while killing Snake and Ice. How he even [[FurryConfusion knows]] what "cavemen" or "lemmings" are is never explained.
* A character called Alice miscalculates during a lesson in preparing a hallucinogenic incapacitant. She inadvertently goes on a mind-bending trip and encounters smoking caterpillars, talking chessmen and a dormouse in a teapot. See Creator/AAPessimal's ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' fic ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/5169257/1/White-Rabbit White Rabbit]]''. A Music/JeffersonAirplane song is intimately involved. Alice Band even finds herself merging with the essence of Grace Slick to sing it.
* The ''WesternAnimation/TheLoudHouse'' fic ''Fanfic/RequiemForALoud'' is filled with lyrics of various pop songs, courtsey of Luna. Chapter 13 has the most so far since this is ADayInTheLimelight chapter for her.
* The ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse''/''Manga/OnePiece'' crossover ''Fanfic/AGemInTheRough'' has quite a few songs integrated in the plot. Some notable songs include "We Are The Crystal Gems," [[Music/{{TheBeatles}} "With A Little Help From My Friends,"]] [[Music/{{Queen}} "Don't Stop Me Now,"]] [[Film/{{MaryPoppins}} "Jolly Holiday,"]] [[WesternAnimation/{{TheHobbit}} "The Greatest Adventure,"]] and [[spoiler: the 4kids rap.]] There are also a few original songs thrown in as well, most notably a summary of the entire story up until that point called "A Gem In The Rough" and the aforementioned "I Am The Very Model Of A Cunning Tiger Millionaire" (which were both set to the tune of [[Theatre/{{ThePiratesOfPenzance}} "I Am The Very Model Of A Modern Major General,"]]( "Going To The Grand Line," and "If You Want To Be Our Shipwright" (both being set to the tune of [[WesternAnimation/{{TheSimpsons}} songs from ''The Simpsons,'' specifically "Gonna Paint Your Wagon" and "Minimum Wage Nanny"]] as stated in the Author Commentary).
--> Credit for the above lyrics go to the band America ("Horse With No Name"), Music/PinkMartini ("Dosvedanya, Mio Bombino"), Jim Croce ("Had to Say I Love You In a Song"), and Music/TheBeatles ("Sun King.")