Writers often hear “find your own voice”. There are whole articles about how readers won’t identify with your writing if it isn’t from the heart, if it doesn’t dredge up bits of your soul that literally lay on the page like chewed up meat. Writers are told that without a voice of our own, we merely blend into the framework of the many others who are producing stories; we fade into the background.
I agree with this yes. In that, I feel that even if we start the process inspired by another’s work, eventually we should be able to find that path to words, that is uniquely ours. When we ‘speak’ people should know it’s us and, even if there are similarities to others, there should be things that still make our work unique. However, I feel like there’s way more to this. In my opinion, there is The Voice, then there is The ‘Superficial’ Voice:
The Voice: These stories are a beautiful challenge. Your heart hurts as you write, you struggle sometimes, you cry with your characters, you believe in them, you love, you hate, you throw stuff around, you’re more passionate than you ever thought you could be.
The ‘Superficial’ Voice: You begin writing a little apprehensively. Maybe it’s not your usual genre or age-group you’re writing for. They’re more mainstream than you’ve ever gone and you wonder if you want to be associated with these stories. You wonder why you’re writing them. The characters grow on you, they become a part of you so that halfway through you change gears and wonder why you weren’t as excited about them in the first place. They’re challenging too, though in a different way. By the time you’re done, you love them.
So let me ask this: Does that mean that The ‘Superficial’ Voice is any less real, or imaginative, or intriguing than The Voice? I don’t believe that’s the case, in fact, I feel like they’re both a part of us. I feel that they help us grow as writers and allow us to produce fantastic work. So what’s Your Voice?
Your Voice: When you put pen to paper, fingers to keys and write what only you can.
I’ll see you all Friday and have a fantastic evening!
N.B: My YA paranormal/fantasy Secrets of the Tenari (Book 1 in the Tenari Trilogy) can be found ‘on Amazon,’ and, read excerpts from the book ‘here’ & ‘here. If you want to peruse WIP excerpts/flash fiction, search using the keywords Random Wednesdays :).