Recently, a young writer reached out to Senior Editor Robert Lee Brewer about how to develop his natural writing voice. Here’s his answer.
I regularly receive questions from writers about writing, getting published, promotion, and so many other topics of interest for writers. But recently, I was asked a question by a young writer about finding their voice, which is always a tricky one to answer.
Here’s his question: As a young writer just beginning to ply his career path, how can I find my natural voice? My word-for-word answer is below.
How Do I Find My Voice in Writing?
There is only one true way to develop your natural voice, and that is to practice writing and work at being as honest as possible to who you are and how you would say something. For some writers, this will naturally make their writing spare; for others, it may become super colloquial. The tricky part for any writer is that your voice is your voice, so you can’t just copy what someone else is doing and quickly adopt a new writing tool.
Rather, developing your voice also calls upon you to develop an understanding of who you are and how you want to communicate with the world. You may already know this voice well, or it may yet be elusive (or only available for certain types of writing).
Also, be aware that your true voice may be one that you currently discount as not being as strong as other writers’ voices. This is very common among writers: Having a moment when they realize that their voice, the one everyone else loves, has been there all along, but it didn’t feel especially special to the writer themself.
Or it seemed too weird or obnoxious or silly or whatever other adjective to share with the world. And it took a bit of bravery and courage to finally share this voice with the world, which the world then gobbled up and asked for more.
Soooo, my bottom-line advice: Work on the craft of writing while continually trying to write in the way that feels most honest and true to who you are. That might sound a little abstract, but it’s honestly the best way I’ve witnessed to find your unique voice, the one that the world wants to hear.
Have you always wanted to be a writer? Don’t let doubt or fear get the best of you—take a chance and learn how to start writing a book, novel, short story, memoir, or essay.