May 28th, 2008

Voice, the all-elusive trait...

I enjoyed megancrewe's blog post yesterday on voice. I thought about participating, but when I look over my books, I guess I don't see much voice. I know I must have it -- all writers have something, right?

I went to a seminar a few years ago on voice. The speaker (I believe it was Barbara Samuels, a romance writer) talked about how everyone really *does* have voice...we just need to recognize it. It's been three years, and I'm still not sure I can see mine. I've had readers tell me it's there, that they can tell when something's a 'Robin' book -- but I can't always.

I liked that exercise we all did a while back, the top ten signs a book is yours? I can definitely do that based on voice for pretty much anyone I've read more than one book from -- except for myself ;)

So tell me? What do I look for in my writing to find that voice? Is it my serious/sarcastic MCs? (They're usually more serious than sarcastic). Is it my love for ellipses and em dashes (which I'm really working to cut down -- hence the parentheses, which are just as bad)? Maybe the use of other languages here and there or the too-old tone? How do you find your voice?
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