Daddy's Christmas Angel

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Your Voice As An Author

"Angels I See Everywhere" encaustic MMSikes
When I first began writing book-length fiction, I kept hearing over and over again, "You need to develop your own voice." What that meant I did not know at the time.

Reading an article published in Professional Artist magazine, the October 2011 issue, I was captivated by the words of Matthew Daub who discusses the artist's struggle for originality in his or her work. In this article, he says that many of the watercolors he sees today resemble, both in technique and in subject matter, examples he has seen in popular "how-to" books.

I was especially drawn to this statement by Daub, "Although no one can lay claim to complete originality, once an artist has become recognized and known for a certain thing, he or she owns it--it's off limits to those who follow after."

Daub also points out that the artists who stand out are the ones who create something never seen before. His words started me thinking about several books I've tried to read lately. Perhaps the reason I found them difficult to hold my attention was because of the same thing Daub found in the art he was discussing. There was nothing new or different in the storyline nor in the way the writer told the story.

The books I enjoy most are ones unique in subject matter and the way it is presented. I appreciate the writer's voice that is different and stands out from the crowd. The writers I love to read have developed their own voices, and, for me, their books are page turners.

As authors, I believe we should all aspire to rise to a higher level by telling distinctive stories, developed from vivid imaginations, and all the while using our own unique voices. That is writing creativity in the truest sense.

Have you developed your own voice as an author? Or do you attempt to imitate the voice of another author?

Mary Montague Sikes

4 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm still working on it, as I know my stories aren't original. Just hope the way I tell them is original.

Monti said...

Alex, reading the art magazine article, I gather he's saying the art can be the same subject but painted in a unique fashion. What you are doing is original if you are telling your story in your own unique way. That's the key to voice, I think.

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi, Monti,

I so agree with your post. I, to, will put down a book if the voice isn't unique and intriguing.

AND, thank you so much for the comment on my post. A strong voice is so necessary to be noticed, and your belief that my voice is strong means quite a lot to me.

THANKS again.

Monti said...

Thank you, Michael. I'm glad you agree and understand.