Have you ever paused to think of how you sound in the ears of your readers as a writer?
Every writer need a writing voice, writing voice makes you unique as a writer.
Writing voice is how you sound consistently in your writings, your tone, words, and structures all put together determines your writing voice.
One of the benefits of having your unique voice is that it will help you communicate your thoughts, ideas or imaginations effectively to your readers, your readers will be able to identify your writings among many other writings, your readers will be able to tell that it’s you behind the pen in any situation.
Initially, I thought writing voice is something I can choose from a list of available options, but that is not the case, your writing voice is something you have to create following your own set rules, that’s what makes it unique.
Many factors will determine your writing voice, factors such as the kind of topic you write about, the reasons why you are writing, the people you are writing for and more others.
What this means is that no one can choose or construct a writing voice for you, its all left to you as a writer to horn your writing voice, but you can use some tips listed below to horn your writing voice.
1. Read other writers
Yeah reading, its always on a writer list of growth tools.
Reading is one thing that has helped me horn my writing voice. Whenever I read stuff from other writers I don’t just grab only the ideas and knowledge they share, I also take note of how they sound, how they flow and the way they structure their writings.
Initially, I got this idea wrong, when I read from my favourite writers I will try to imitate their voice or style in my writings.
The idea of reading other writers is not to sound like them, the idea is to use their voice to shape your voice, to understand the importance of maintaining a certain tone and flow throughout your writings, the idea is to use the understanding you have about the way they write to create your tone and flow.
2. Write as if you are talking to a friend
This has been very effective for me, this might be all you need to horn your writing voice.
An alternative to this is to narrow all your potential readers to one personality and then write as if you are talking to that personality.
The reasons I adopt the idea of writing as if I’m talking to a friend is that it makes me more comfortable when expressing myself.
This idea is all about picturing your best friend sitting on the other side of the table willing to hear all you have to say without interrupting and you sitting opposite, looking straight to his or her face and explaining to him or her something you are passionate or enthusiastic about.
If you choose a stranger, there are certain things you might not want to say and there are some words you might not like to use, this is because you will be putting some certain things into considerations which might limit your words or flexibility.
As a writer when your words are limited, it will always affect your creativity. Writers are known to be limitless with words, writing as if you are talking to a friend will make you comfortable with words.
Choosing a best friend, someone who you are comfortable with will give you the freedom to be yourself and be ruthless with words.
For example, the way I sound In this post is how I will sound if you were right here in front of me and I’m to discuss writing voices with you.
I’m not going to adjust my tone or grammar because you are here, this is how I’m going to talk to you, I’m going to use the same words and the same tone I’m using right here.
With this I don’t have to struggle with presenting my ideas, which is some of the challenges most people face, most people struggle to come up with ideas to write about and still struggle expressing their ideas to their audience.
Writing as if you are talking to a friend helps you maintain confidence and freedom of expression which is part of the things that will help in shaping your unique voice.
3. Write for your ideal readers
One of the mistakes most people make when writing, especially non-fiction content is trying to write for everybody, by taking this approach you might end up not writing for nobody.
Writing for your ideal readers entails that you put into consideration the characteristics of the people who might likely read your writings. Doing this will help you choose the right kind of words and structure that you can maintain over a long period, which becomes your unique voice.
This has helped me a lot in shaping my writing voice and maintain consistent flow in my writings.
For example, this post you are reading right now is categorically for you, for people who want to learn how to horn their writing voice, it’s not for the entire 7 billion people in the world, it’s specific for some set of people (writers) out of the entire world population.
It’s for those who wish to find their writing voice, having this in mind goes a long way to determine how I worded this post.
4. Don’t worry about rules
Okay, let me be more specific.
Don’t worry about conventional writing rules.
When I started my writing journey, one of the things I did first was to research about rules and styles of writing.
What I found got me overwhelmed, I almost gave up, some of the rules I got doesn’t seem like something I can follow through, there where lots of emphasis on grammar, structure, passive, active voice and all that, there are lots of things professionals said is required to be an effective writer.
Knowing that I suck in all of these things made it look like writing is not a thing for me.
But everything changed when I got the idea that all this doesn’t matter, and truly It doesn’t matter because right now, I can’t boost of knowing the rules in writing, but the thing is I can still communicate my thoughts or ideas to you through my writings.
You don’t need to follow conventional rules of writing in shaping your writing voice, one thing that will happen if you follow rules is that you will sound fake. Some of your friends or family or readers that will be reading your content already have an idea of how you sound, so who are you trying to impress with grammar and styles.
The most important thing in writing is to communicate your ideas, and you can do that by writing simply as you can and without subjecting to rules that can make it difficult for you to write.
Meanwhile, if you are like me that is not familiar with most of the conventional rules in writing, you don’t need to worry about that, as you go through your writing journey, there are chances that you will learn the rules in the process.
But the thing is, you don’t need to play by the conventional rules when shaping your writing voice, play by the ability to communicate your ideas.
5. Have a method
The method here I mean is how you present your writings.
Here is how I now present my writings, especially informative once.
In most cases, I start with an introduction, where I highlight some of the things the writing is all about.
Then I use lists in headings to break down the whole writings into easy to read format.
This style now saves me a lot of time in making decisions on how I should present my writings, It’s now like a template for me, all I need is to come up with title and subheadings and then fill up the words in between.
The idea here is to find a method or methods that fit your niche, form and genre of writing, the method will give your writings perspective and sequence, the sequence will help you maintain a consistent pattern of flow which can contribute to shaping your writing voice.
When you have read from other writers and understood how they maintain a consistent tone and flow in their writings, when you start writing like you are talking to a friend, ignoring all the conventional rules, but focusing on communicating clearly to your readers and you develop procedure for your writings, you will see how your writing voice will start taking shape.
Have you found your writing voice? Which of these tips are you going to try in shaping your writing voice?
Share your thoughts in the comments.