Usually, when writing verses in Tanach Scrolls, words are written across the column from the right margin to the left (except, of course, for required Parsha spacing.)
I have seen two "special" formats:
The "brick" layout, which seems to be reserved for "songs". Examples:
- Shirat Hayam (Song of the Sea) in Shemot
- Devorah's song in Shoftim (Judges)
- David's song in Shmuel II (Samuel II)
The 2 column straight layout. Examples:
- Ha'azinu near the end of Sefer Devarim (Deut.)
- Words beginning "To everything there is a time" in Kohelet (Ecclessiastes)
- List of Haman's 10 sons in Esther
- Tehillim, Mishlei, and most of Iyov
The 4 column straight layout. Example (the only one?):
- The kings in Yehoshua
What common theme or criteria are used to decide which layout to use for which of these areas?
From what I can tell, the "brick" layout seems to reserved for "songs", though ha'azinu is called a "song" and it has the 2 column layout.
Why are these specific layouts appropriate for these areas? (I.e. - why choose one layout vs. the other?) Why does it get any layout at all? Why not leave the writing straight across as with everything else?