Writers, do you know how to find your voice?Posted: September 22, 2011
I was mining the archives on Sam Horn’s blog today for inspiration and uncovered a gem on finding your voice. You can read the whole post here. (Do watch the Babs video—it’s very inspiring even if you’re not a fan.)
Here’s the part of Ms. Horn’s post that sparkled for me:
“Do you know how to find your voice?
It’s what you say and how you say it when you’re in the moment talking about something you love, fear, hate, dread, want or wish for.
It’s your unvarnished truth.
It’s what you say when no one’s looking or listening.
It’s what you say when you’re not trying to be smart or politically correct.
It’s what you say when you’re talking out your feelings without reservation or censoring.
Your voice is in your first draft.
Yet too often we edit out our voice.
We review what we’ve written and start worrying what people will think.
We start trying to impress or we clean up our prose so it’s grammatically correct.
We think about our planned remarks and decide they’re too risky so we dial them back.
Yet when we play it safe and take out the edge, our voice becomes generic.
We start sounding like everyone else.
Because we have taken out the one thing that makes us uniquely interesting.
Are you writing a blog or article today? Working on your manuscript? Planning a presentation?
Dare to be distinct.”
I have two of her books on my bookshelf, POP! STAND OUT IN ANY CROWD and WHAT’S HOLDING YOU BACK. I got something out of both of them, particularly POP! which I refer to often.