Tag Archive 'voice'

The I of the Swarm

Photo by Max xx

This post concerns character and voice, but I’m going to start by discussing bees. And Denis Diderot.

In his novel Rameau’s Nephew, Diderot disputed the notion of a distinct and singular human personality. He considered this a holdover from the days of superstition—it smacked of a soul, and other discardable pieties.

Using as a mouthpiece a fictionalized version of the composer Rameau—who was constantly obliged to curry favor with patrons, placate audiences, appease musicians, hold off creditors, sweet-talk [...]

Voice and Structure: A Planner’s Perspective

I’m currently working on a novel called Dreamer’s Wood, first installment in the Blackthorn & Grim series, and my deadline is getting uncomfortably close. Indeed, the story is so much in my head at present that I really had no choice but to write about it for this month’s post.

Dreamer’s Wood, a historical fantasy/mystery for adult readers, is designed around contrasts in voice. Three major characters–Blackthorn, the disillusioned healer; Grim, her taciturn sidekick; Oran, the dreamer prince–take turns narrating chapters [...]

Flying Fingers or Tapping Toes: Art is Art is Art

Photo via Wikimedia Commons, User:Jean-no [FAL]

First there were difficulties securing a vehicle, then foot tendinitis, then unprotected chest met deck edge, leading to multiple rib fractures. (At which time my mantra became Go pain killers! Yay for modern pharmacology!)

Between one thing and another, it seemed like life was conspiring to keep me from fitness-dancing. When I restarted this January, I’d gone three years without hipping to a hop.*

Now, six weeks into my classes, it’s become apparent to me that [...]

A Dog’s-eye view

I had a concept in mind that had been nagging away at me for months, demanding to be crafted into a story. Two concepts, in fact, one about a cat and one about two dogs. Both seemed ideal for inclusion in my short fiction collection, Prickle Moon.

I made numerous attempts to write these stories, trying many different approaches to style and structure. That was unusual for me – I generally have a good intuitive feel for what will work. The [...]

Find Your Voice, Find Your Power

I just got back from attending the RWA National Conference in Anaheim. Every time I had to walk across the lobby, I would brace myself in preparation for the voices of two thousand women as they enthusiastically talked about books and writing, publishing and life. The din was intense, but not nearly as intense as the waves of power rolling around in the room as these same women’s voices proclaimed their power. They opened their mouths and uttered I want, [...]

Justine Musk on Badassery, Identity, and Writing

The tagline of her popular blog reads “because you’re a creative badass.”

In a single post on creativity, she might draw from neurologic, evolutionary, psychological, and anthropologic principles.

She’s visited the Congo with Eve Ensler of The Vagina Monologues and to support Eve’s non-profit, V-Day, with its aim of ending violence against women, my guest plans to auction her Tesla Roadster.

She’s published three books (two dark fantasies, one YA supernatural thriller.) She mothers five boys, and when the stories about her divorce [...]

Listen to YOUR Voice

Your voice already exists, right now, every time you sit down to write. It is inescapable—your voice is you. Voices can be obscured, even buried, under avalanches of helpful advice and nudges to be more literary or more commercial or less gritty or less sexual, but it cannot be entirely lost.

I was once hiking with a multi-national group, and one of the guys was an Australian who treasured his American accent imitation. When he finally let us [...]

Switching voices

I know a thing or two about writing in multiple voices.

My day job as a feature writer and editor requires me to write in a standard journalistic voice.   Before I was hired by Working Partners to write YA novels, I wrote historicals.  The First Daughter series is heavy on contemporary teenage lingo, like, OMG yannow?.  And now I’ve been asked to provide a sample for a horror novel in a traditional voice.  Then there is the voice I use for Writer Unboxed posts.  [...]

Voice 101

One of the hardest elements to explain to aspiring writers is voice. It’s not enough to say ‘voice is how you tell the story’. In fact, where voice is concerned, it’s easier to show, not tell, and the most effective way to show is by reading aloud. Most of my favourite writers are outstanding users of voice.

For the purposes of this piece, I tried to list everything I believe goes into creating an effective voice. Not so easy. My [...]