I'm always amazed by the great and complex drum arrangements that posters on this forum compose. Lately, I have put composing aside to work on my guitar technique. But I need to get back to writing/recording after several months of not doing it. I'm struggling to get rolling, because I find drum programming to be pure drudgery... by far my least favorite part of the writing process. I use EZ Drummer primarily, the drum sounds in the expansion packs are solid and it does have a tool that takes a pattern and creates many variations of that pattern, which I find useful. Typically when I write, I either have a song scratched out on guitar and then choose drum patterns from my vast MIDI library to match the song, or I just start assembling patterns that I think would sound good in a song format, and then write/record on top of that. However, I want to try a different style of writing my next several songs... I want to write the lyrics first, then build everything around that. Regardless, I'm still going to run into the same issue... I hate the process of assembling the drum arrangements. Working with a live drummer probably isn't an option for me, because the time I can put into writing is very fragmented... an hour here, and hour there, sometimes late at night or early morning, so very difficult to work with others under those constraints. So my question for everyone here who programs drums: Do you find it inspiring or fun, or a necessary evil? What is your song writing process, what tools do you use, and do they make your songwriting process easier?