Tips for Creating Voice in Your Writing
Ask any agent or editor what they look for in a manuscript and inevitably they’ll say they’re looking for voice. A strong voice. A unique voice. An original voice. A realistic voice. But how do you ensure you and your main character possess this? That’s the billion-dollar question, isn’t it?
There is a lot of writing advice out there, some good, some not so good, and I’ll try not to repeat it. I’m only going to talk about what works for me, and I hope it can provide some guidance and help for you as you develop yours. So with that caveat in mind, let’s talk about Voice.
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How to write backstory but not bog down your book
Telling character backstory is sometimes necessary to show why your character has a specific motivation or mindset. Yet it’s important to learn how to write backstory that will not bog your novel down in constant harking back to prior events that occurred before the present time of your narrative. Read 5 tips for using backstory better:
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Feel good story of the week: A repo man didn’t want to seize an elderly couple’s car.
So he helped pay it off for them instead.
From the beginning, Jim Ford said, he was reluctant about repossessing Pat and Stanford Kipping’s car.
Even though that was, obviously, the job.
Ford is a repo man, co-owner of Illini Recovery Inc., a company in Southern Illinois. And earlier this month, he was working a job involving the Kippings’ vehicle, a 1998 Buick, the Belleville News-Democrat reported. Instead of repo’ing the Buick, though, Ford decided to do something a little different.
Continue reading in The Washington Post >>
This new characterization technique could transform your writing
Characterization is one of the most important aspects of writing good fiction. Characterization is what gives authors the power to sway their readers. It’s how you get your reader to fall in love with—or despise—the characters in your book.
Continue reading at The Write Practice >>
Everyone’s Invited: 16 Quotes on the Power of Listening
Thanksgiving is the most quintessentially American of holidays, celebrating an event that precedes even our independence: a festival of gratitude hosted by early European settlers at Plymouth, with the support of the local Native Americans.
While we tend to imagine the lines between these communities clearly drawn, historians have revealed there was a constant flow of Europeans keen on joining the illustrious Native civilization already in progress. “Hernando De Soto had to post guards to keep his men and women from defecting to Native societies,” reports James W. Loewen. “The Pilgrims so feared Indianization that they made it a crime for men to wear long hair.”
Abandoning the customs and beliefs of one’s homeland is never easy — not even with powerful incentives like smoked venison. Adopting new views requires a certain amount of trust and understanding, and before one can understand, one must listen. Perhaps we’ve been venerating the wrong European settlers all this time — 400 years onward, most of us could stand to be better listeners, to improve at finding common ground between cultures, to accept someone else’s solution for problems we have just barely begun to apprehend.
Continue reading at Signature >>