Writing Exercise: V is for Voice

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Find your voice. In writing, in singing, in the world. Candence, rhythm, volume, smoothness, word choices – these are your own and no one else’s. Claim them.

Your Voice might change between blog posts and novels, talking to adults in a professional environment and children on the playground, singing blues or rock. But still, at the core, it’s your Voice.

It takes time to find your Voice. Understanding. Writing a lot of words or singing a lot of different songs. My voice has children and playfulness, short phrases haphazardly put together, and then weird asides of scientific thought.

If when people say, “I heard you read when I read your novel.” your speaking and writing voice are the same and it’s coming through (yay!). But sometimes the speaking and writing voice are completely different. As is genre changing things up and your different characters might have different personal voices (wait, no MIGHT – they SHOULD have different voices).

Kalayna Price has a wonderful blog posting “On Voice and Timing” in Magical Words (10/1/2011). URL: http://www.magicalwords.net/kalayna-price/on-voice-and-timing/

WRITING EXERCISE: Think about your writing voice and write down what you know about it. Is it short and sweet or long and detailed? Political or fluffy or introspective or…? What writing strengths do you have – dialog, action, characters, etc.?

Now, write one paragraph with a voice aimed at Fantasy (your choice of Urban, High, Sword & Sorcery, etc.) and a second one for  “real life” type genres (Murder Mystery, Thriller, Horror Contemporary, Disaster, Romance Contemporary, etc.). Have the scenes in the paragraph be similar number of characters and situation. How did the Genre Voice change the paragraph … and what things remained the same between the two scenes that could be your underlying voice and how does that match up to your initial thoughts about your voice?

4 thoughts to “Writing Exercise: V is for Voice”

  1. I think my voice is introspective. I talk to myself (in my mind) a lot, and maybe that’s what my characters do, as I have observed in my A to Z flash fiction. Thank you for this exercise, Erin. I am going to work on it next week. 🙂

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