When we begin as writers, we spend a lot of time searching for our voice. Searching for the writing style that makes us unique and recognizable. This, of course, comes with practice. We have to figure out in which way to string our words together that is most comfortable for us, while still providing a good flow for the reader. At times it can drive a writer crazy. After all, writers want to have their own voice that a reader can immediately identify. If a writer has a unique enough voice, it can even help to increase their popularity and sales.
Of course, certain things assist us in our journey to find our voice. Many of us rely on books about writing to give us help with the changing world of writing. Surely these books will have some sort of influence on the way we write, and how our voice develops.
Other people can influence the way we write. Many of us have blogs dedicated to our writing. We post excerpts, short stories, poems, and anything else that we hope to get feedback on. That feedback influences and can change how we write, and how our writing sounds.
Another thing that can impact our writing voice is personal doubts. A writer may take the extra effort to make sure a certain part of their writing is particularly strong because they feel it is a weak point for them. Personally, I have been told that I use a lot of detail in my writing, and that sometimes my stories play out like a movie in the reader’s head. I was most gracious for this compliment, and I think I know why it ended up that way.
Ever since I began writing at a young age, I’ve always felt that my writing lacked description. I worried–and sometimes still worry-that the reader will have no idea what I’m talking about, and won’t be able to picture what I’m trying to describe to them. I especially felt that way because I write sci-fi/fantasy. Coming up with made up creatures and cities and weapons sometimes can take a little extra description to make sure the reader understands. Because of this self-doubt, I feel that I put extra details into my writing to help convince myself that I’m describing something well enough.
For example, instead of saying the characters were blocked by bronze doors and tried to break through, I might say “the characters were blocked by a set of bronze double doors standing nearly ten feet tall. Rust flaked from them as the main character bashed his shoulder into it in an attempt to break through.” Is all that detail completely necessary? Probably not. However, I personally think it adds a little something extra to help give the reader a more vivid image of what’s happening.
What influences your voice and the way you write? Do you mostly rely on books? Feedback? Does self-doubt and personal weaknesses change how your write?