What is your writer's voice?
Your use of grammar and sentence structure.
Your use of language.
And fundamentally, your personality and attitude.
How you see the world - and your own individual personality will shape your voice. It's absolutely crucial to be yourself when you are writing. It is OK to have different voices for different types of fiction.
A strong voice and a stunning idea underpins a gripping plot and brilliant characters. Without voice and idea, your story is unlikely to take off.
An author with a strong voice is confident in knowing what they want to write and how they want to communicate it. If you read further books by the same author, it is like meeting up with an old friend. How do you gain confidence?
1. Don't try too hard. - more authentic voice to shine.
2. Be natural. Eg. If you write funny fiction, write things which make you smile and laugh.
3. Don't be afraid to be you. Your voice is unique.
4. Don't overedit. When writing pours out of you, it's more likely to be your natural voice. Overediting leads to you feeling insecure, unconfident
WHAT KIND OF VOICES ARE CHILDREN'S PUBLISHERS AND AGENTS LOOKING FOR?
1. Child-friendly - informal, conversational, exciting
2. Funny - humour (if done to your style) always works well with children
3. Playful language - dynamic and exciting.
4. Energetic tone - word choices that crackle and sparkle.
CASE STUDY: ROALD DAHL
James and the Giant Peach
Aunt Sponge was enormously fat and very short. She had small piggy eyes, a sunken mouth, and of those white flab by faces that looked exactly as though it had been boiled. She was like a great white soggy overboiled cabbage.
1. The language is childlike - pggy, flabby
2. Humour - comparing James' aunt to a cabbage. Not a particularly nice cabbage.
3. Conversational tone.- that looked exactly as though it had been boiled. She was like a great white soggy overboiled cabbage.
The 2nd sentence is like sharing secrets between friends, creating a bond between the author and reader.