We often hear “writer’s voice” mentioned in writing craft books and courses, and are told to be true to it. However, I have found this notion confusing. What is my writer’s voice? How can I recognize it? What do I do to use it in a consistent way? This post is for sharing with you what I’ve learned so far.
The attribute of a writers' voice is as natural as their speaking voice. It is recognizable, authentic and gives flavor to your writing. Readers pick up your distinct personality, know you are real, and speak directly to them.
How can we develop our writer’s voice?
- Use your natural pattern of word choice for each sentence.
- Write the way you speak, then revise and edit for grammar problems.
You might value family, courage, and caring for others most or you might want to write about issues of poverty, crime, or loneliness. Give yourself the freedom to express the things important to you, in your own unique way.
A writer’s voice is not style. Your voice is your own; style is much broader than voice. A writing style can be long and complex, or sparse, simple and straightforward. Style might vary according to topic.
Writer’s voice is:
• Our author fingerprint, it makes our writing authentic. Authenticity has a great impact on our readers sensing we are real and speaking to them.
• It distinguishes our speech from others.
• The way we string words together shows it is uniquely mine, or yours.
• We are the only ones that can express our thoughts the way we do.
How do we know, how do we develop our voice?
Write, write and write more. Then follow these tips:
• It takes a writing practice. Write something every day. Create a workable schedule for longer projects with daily commitments of a certain number of words or for a specific amount of time.
• Write what compels and intrigues you.
• If you write to someone who knows you well, that you trust, you will write without pretenses.
• Your natural voice comes through when you write something you care about deeply.
Deborah Lyn Stanley is a writer, artist, and editor. She is a retired project manager who now devotes her time to writing, art and caring for mentally impaired seniors. Deborah writes articles, essays and stories. Visit her web-blog: My Writer's Life Blog/
“Write your best, in your voice, your way!”