Fang Talks

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13 05 16

Writer’s voice

This has come up recently, and I certainly think it’s an interesting aspect of writing.

There’s a fair few hobbyist (or professional!) writers reading this blog, and I’m sure you guys are familiar with your own writing style. Or styles. It’s good if you have more of those in your tool belt, but here’s a question for you: are they still all recognizably yours? Come on, there’s no wrong answers here. Think it over for a minute, look back at a couple of things you’ve written. Do you employ the same kinds of subtleties to add in that little extra spice? Does your own voice shine through in every single style you write in?

Chances are, it does. And that’s not necessarily good or bad. It definitely adds that personal touch that makes it yours. Someone won’t be likely to spot it in a group of a hundred other pieces of text, but if you tell them they’ll go “oh yeah, I see how that’s yours”. What if you can turn that personal touch off, or transform it into something different altogether? Wouldn’t it be a great extra way to control the way your story reads, the vibes it gives off? I think that’s a pretty powerful tool, but also incredibly hard to master. Not only do you have to write objectively, you may need to do something against your personal instincts.

Or maybe that’s all bullshit I just thought up that’s only mildly plausible. Who knows, I’m no expert.
~ Fang


  • 16/05/2016 (1:32 PM)

    I think that there is a distinct air to my writing. At the same time though it is still kind of forming. I also still do a lot of things I really shouldn’t. So I know my voice has yet to fully evolve. But it’s getting there.

  • 16/05/2016 (2:54 AM)

    When most writers I know want to dive into a new story, they always tell me, “I read a lot more! It helps me figure out what I’m going to say!”

    What I really hear is, “I want to see how the pros do it so I can stylistically copy the things I like!”

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course. Taking pieces of a style is hardly plagiarizing. But I’m not the type to read more when I want to write. If anything, I read less. I want everything I put out to be 100% me, not something I subconsciously picked up in a great book I read. And I can admit that I AM impressionable. We both are.

    (Fun fact: one time my cohort was really into British fiction and at one point during our writing I had to keep pointing out that he was injecting a ton of Britishisms into our story. Such as ‘trousers’ instead of pants and ‘rubbish’ instead of garbage. It sounded hilariously out of place)

  • 14/05/2016 (10:21 AM)

    In my own writing (as opposed to, say, a report for school), I believe I have a style. I’ve tried to copy other writers but no one seemed to notice.

    But I’ve also had ideas that I believed were so good that I laid way off the personal imprint. I didn’t want style to get in the way.

    It was sort of like how a rock band might lay off the quirks if they knew a pop song can speak for itself. As though Pink Floyd said, “Hey! This song speaks for itself. Maybe we don’t need a 5 minute keyboard intro, 4 minute guitar solo, and Roger screaming as though he’s lost his mind in the outro bit.”

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