When you first start writing finding your own voice and writing style is challenging, you want your writing to appeal to the widest audience possible and you can end up sacrificing your own style to do that. That is a mistake. Your “voice” is more than just your particular style of writing it is made up of things like sentence structure, the flow of your writing and the words you use. It is the dialogue that you create and the use of punctuation, your voice is unique and it defines you as a writer.
What is a Writer’s Voice
If you want to identify voice and understand what it is then you need to take a look at some of your favorite writers and their style. Think of some of the greats like Mark Twain, JD Salinger, Jane Austen and Ernest Hemingway, think for a minute about why you like their writing and what appeals to you. Can you hear their voice? Analyze the writing style that pulls you in, can you feel the individual personality of each author? The writer’s voice is more than just style it is their very heart and soul put to paper. It is how they see the world and it is evident in the flow of their writing. Here is some help in identifying voice.
Finding Your Voice
When you first start writing you may not be able to identify your own voice. Voice can come with experience and confidence in your ability as a writer. Here are some tips to help you find your own style of writing.
Make a point of reading different books in different genres, for example science fiction writers aren’t going to have the same voice as Victorian era authors. Identify the writer’s voice and what makes their writing unique. Are they excellent with dialogue or with world building? What style elements are present in their work and how do they tell a story that draws you in.
2 Start Writing
Write, write some more and keep writing even after that. The more you hone your craft the better you will be at it. You will soon discover your own voice and style. Do you focus on detail or is your writing more punchy? Do you have a tendency to ramble or are you succinct and to the point? What are the qualities of your protagonist? Do you write in a more conversational tone or are you just a bit sardonic.
3 Work with Others
Writing groups can be tremendously helpful for a new writer or someone trying to define their own style. You can give the other writers in the group some samples of your writing and get them to critique for you. You can do the same for them and it will help you hone your skill in detecting another writer’s voice.
Your voice is going to come from your own experiences and your experiences in life. It flavors your writing and makes it stand out from all the other aspiring writers out there. Don’t be afraid to allow your uniqueness to shine through!