Finding your writers voice scott biddulph two drops of ink

Find Your Writing Voice

I wanted to share a story about finding your voice as a writer. I remember as I began my writing career I was very focused on the construct of writing; proper sentence structure, grammar, and using big words that made me sound like a writer (to name a few). I would write these types of articles for blogs and a few online columns, and I would get literally no response at all from readers. I would visit the sites of other writers, some of whom were horrible at mechanics, and they would have dozens of responses from engaged readers–oh how I longed to be read.

Reading as a Writer

I decided to begin a journey of reading books from other authors about writing. I found some really awesome books that had fantastic advice. One book I found on Kindle (free eBooks) was called “Write good or die.” this book is an excellent collection of advice from published authors that is a must-read for the aspiring writer. I began to search the hearts and minds of successful writers to see if I could find a common thread. One of the best books I read, for me at least, was “Bird by Bird” by Anne Lamott. I learned several things that have helped me tremendously in my journey as a writer.

Two things that stood out the most to me were this: First, I learned to write for myself and my satisfactions–never write to the reader. Readers are fickle, and no one can write in a way that suffices the interests and pet-peeves of everyone who reads. Second, write like you talk, write like you would communicate with a close circle of friends, speak from your heart–that is where you find your voice. Anne Lamott taught me so much about this aspect of writing. If you are still looking for your voice–read her book.

Obviously, there are all sorts of writing styles where these words of advice will not work; an example would be technical writing where the writer must use a third person narrative; however, in the field of creative works, these books are nuggets of gold.

 

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6 comments

  1. I removed Eephus and his comments from the site. This is a place for us a writers to exchange thoughts and ideas–it is not a place for nasty comments and criticisms of posts or comments. If you are the type of person who feels the need to elevate yourself and your insecurities by demeaning others–take a hike–you not welcome here.

  2. Eephus,
    I think you miss the point my friend. If a writer always thinks of his or her audience as they write each and every sentence they will often times lose their true voice, they will not write from the heart. You and Frank are both correct; however,writing in a journal has nothing to do with this conversation at all.

    I don`t know how much you write, what kinds of writing you do, or if you have read some of the books available about writing from successful authors. The most common advice authors will give is to “write for yourself.” That is to say, write what you are passionate about or what you know about and write in a way that speaks from your heart.

    Obviously when writing an academic paper, press release, or something of this nature this theory may not work. This is more for fiction, poetry, or the like; moreover, opinions among writers are just as prevalent as with readers. *smiling*

  3. Hey Guy`s,
    Thanks for your comments and I am glad you enjoyed the information. I hope to bring writers together here at “Two Drops of Ink” as a sort of writers group. No matter how long you have been writing you can always learn! William

  4. Very well written. An artist creates art for expression. A scientist discovers for knowledge. A writer writes to portray ideas.

    Whether or not people like it does not matter.

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