Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Finding Your Voice

Help! I need to find my voice! Fortunately, that is a problem that I have never had as a writer –whether I am writing articles, reviews, or stories, I always hear the voice that is mine. If I step back, it comes forward and shapes the words for me. While the foundation is the same, my voice will vary, depending on what I am writing – but it always stays true to who I am.

How do we define this voice that we write with? It is how we say what we want to say. If we are not true to who we are, to the “how” of writing, our words not only will not flow, they will sound forced and “not true”. We need to be able to articulate our feelings, to put our emotional sense about an issue on paper. We need to be able to write with transparency, and feel comfortable doing so.

Our voice consists of the words that we use, the punctuation that we use, how we develop our characters, how we present the dialogue

Go back and reread the writers that you admire. What about their sense of writing feels comfortable to you? Try writing in the different styles that you are attracted to until you find the ones that you feel best express who you are as a person. Our writing is out there for the world to see – knowing this, we need to be able to look in the mirror and feel proud of the person staring back at us!

Write – above all, write. Keep a journal, write a blog, write stories, write books, do writing exercises – keep writing! As you explore different voices, you will begin to recognize that inner feeling of “This is it!” And this will very naturally differ from project to project. Allow the project to help determine the voice, and you will do well.

Another key is to reread several different projects that you have done. A true voice will carry from project to project – it may be presented in a slightly different manner, but the sense of who you are will carry through in all of your work. This, above all, is the importance of voice.

Step out of your own way, and let the writing begin!

© July 2910 Bonnie Cehovet


  1. Bonnie, what a true blog post!! Just last night I was trying to write a cover letter for my next position: PR person for a company that builds power plants... and when I was done, and had my boyfriend to reread it, he was like "are you writing a story?" I had to go back, put myself in a quite unnatural for me "dry-style-writing" mood and rewrite... and it felt so wrong, lol. He was wondering: "you can write 1,500 words out of thin air: and this is just a cover letter!!!"... yep, thin-air, as he put it, writing has always been easy for me: I write the way I talk....

    So, thank you for reminding to be true to my voice: as long as I do not write cover letters or edit my CV :-)

    Victoria Evangelina


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