Search Results for: voice

Why the Most Important Element of Writing is Voice

Writing Voice: 6 Things You Need to Know to Improve It

Writing a book isn’t just a discovery of the story, it’s also a discovery of yourself. Who are you, really? The answers you find appearing on the screen with each word you type can be surprising. And nowhere is the truth about an author revealed more unequivocally than when you open your literary mouth, loosen […]

How To Write In An Authentic Historical Voice

How to Write in an Authentic Historical Voice

Let’s say you’re writing a book set in the 14th Century. Naturally, as a diligent and conscientious writer, you want to do your research and write with an authentic historical voice. In fact, you’re so good and so authentic that what you end up with is something like this: Whilom, as olde stories tellen us, ther […]

6 Steps to Create a Fantastic Narrative Voice (What I Learned Writing Storming)

6 Steps to Create a Fantastic Narrative Voice (What I Learned Writing Storming)

You hear it all the time: readers’ time is precious, and they’re not going to waste it on books that aren’t da bomb. I certainly feel that way about my own reading choices. What’s my main criterion for instantly recognizing when a book isn’t going to be worth my time as a reader? Voice. It all comes […]

To Be or Not To Be: In Defense of the Passive Voice

To Be or Not To Be: In Defense of the Passive Voice

Recently, one of my critique partners asserted that any use of the verb to be formed the passive voice and deserved to be stamped out with as much vigor as possible. This got me to thinking about that misunderstood verb form and the use of passive voice in modern fiction. All of my critique partners […]

Is Your Story’s Voice Turning Away Readers?

Is Your Story’s Voice Turning Away Readers?

A story’s voice is always a hot topic among writers. What is it? How does it work? How can you get one? The difficulty in teaching about a story’s voice is that it’s one of those “you know it when you see it” things. Recently, I encountered a powerful example of voices that work—and voices […]

Most Common Writing Mistakes: Weak Character Voice

Voice. That tantalizingly nebulous word is flung around so often in writing critiques and agent demands that writers sometimes get to where we almost hate the sound of it. Every author is supposed to cultivate a unique voice. But, even more than that, we’re also supposed to create a unique character voice for every one […]

Active Voice vs. Passive Voice: How to Use Both to Get the Most Out of Your Writing

How to Find Your Character’s Voice

This week’s video touches on a few of the differences between authorial and character voices and offers suggestions for finding a unique sound for each character’s voice. Video Transcript: Agents agree: the single most important factor in getting their attention is a strong, unique, and personality-heavy narrative voice. Voice is what defines both your story and your […]

How to Create Distinctive Character Voices

Did you ever have those Shakespeare quizzes in high school in which your evil teacher gave you a list of random quotations from the play you were studying and asked you to identify the speaker? I remember being terrified of those quizzes in theory but enjoying them in practice. Not because they were easy (the teacher never chose the […]

Is Authorial Voice Different From Character Voice?

This week’s video sheds light on the tricky subject of voice by using Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises to explain the differences between authorial voice and  character voice. Video Transcription: This whole idea of “voice” is something many authors struggle with, in part because they’re not always sure what “voice” means. Is voice something […]

Bring Your POV Characters’ Voices to Life

This week’s video offers examples from Barbara Kingsolver’s The Poisonwood Bible to show how she created five unique pov characters’ voices. Video Transcription: Because all our characters come from just one person—namely us—it can often be a challenge to make them all sound like unique people in their own right. This is a challenge that […]