Monday, March 4, 2019

Discover Your Writer's Voice

As writer's, we all have our own voice. And what exactly might that be? It is who we are, and how we express ourselves. It is our style - it reflects our concerns, our goals, our perspectives, and how we approach life. Our voice evolves as we evolve, reflecting who we are and how we present ourselves in the present moment. 

When I first started writing, I had a hard time finding my voice. I wanted to emulate authors that I admired - I wanted to express myself in the best way possible. I lost myself in the process. So how exactly do we find that voice that is us, that represents who we are? We need to be aware of what we like, what we dislike, and why. We need to understand why we make the decisions that we do. Even the music that we listen to reflects who we are. This is the perspective that we want to show in our writing. 

We have to be willing to show all sides of ourselves, to open the door to our inner shadows, and to allow our writing to be multi-dimensional. The choices that we make, if they are honest choices, reflect who we are, where we are in life, and where we are headed.

What I found was that the harder I tried to develop a voice that was me, the emptier I sounded. My writing was hollow - it had no depth, no perspective, didn't flow, and wasn't even consistent from paragraph to paragraph. When I stopped trying, when I simply sat down and wrote, the world opened up for me. 

My advice - the best way to find your writer's voice is to simply write! Sit down and write! Allow your characters to talk to you, allow them to be. Know that if you are having to force your writing, you are on the wrong path. Set your writing project aside, and start writing something else. Listen to those inner voices - they are there for a reason!

One final thought - read! Read everything you can get your hands on. Your perspective on life will grow exponentially, and you will discover parts of yourself that you never knew existed! I cannot begin to tell you how Louisa May Alcott's "Little Women", "Little Men", and "Jo's Boys" expanded my world!

How well is your writer's voice representing you? If it really isn't, then it is time to step up your game!

(c) March 2019 Bonnie Cehovet
Reproduction prohibited without written permission of the author.

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