Finding your voice

Every writer needs a voice, and most say they have one, then launch into examples of tone. Tone isn’t voice, and voice isn’t tone. Voice is such an esoteric concept, in fact, that many writing coaches skip over it entirely. Today we’re going to talk about voice, though, and how to find yours.

Voice unites reader and writer

Voice unites reader and writer

First, let’s define it by what it isn’t: tone. Tone is mood – upbeat, angry, confused, optimistic, the range of emotion. It changes with the piece. You wouldn’t write, for instance, about new cancer treatments in the same tone as you’d write about 3-D ink tattoos. You make a conscious – and conscientious – decision about the mood you want to impart to the reader. It reflects what you are: a careful writer.

Voice, on the other hand, is more akin to personality. It reflects who you are.

Scary? Yes, a little. You expose yourself with everything you write. The personality that comes through – your voice – has developed over a lifetime. Just like your real-life personality, your voice is composed of a million nuances More

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Does an f-bomb make the man?

Los Angeles didn’t quite know what to make of its mayor, Eric Garcetti, holding a

© Piotr Marcinski

© Piotr Marcinski

beer bottle and dropping the f-bomb into a microphone during a rally that was broadcast live to celebrate the Kings’ winning the Stanley Cup.

“They say there are two rules in politics,” the mayor said. “Never, ever be pictured with a drink in your hand and never swear. But this is a big [effing] day.”

Where’d he learn that word – at a Rangers game?

The morning news speculated that Garcetti said it, in part, to offset criticism that he’s too reserved for LA. He’s a Columbia man and a Rhodes Scholar in a town known for beauty, not brains. The unexpected f-bomb, speculators said, made him look more like an average Joe, all right, and average Joes – as we know because Hollywood tells us so – are manly men.

I disagree. That Garcetti used the word only points up its increasing impotence. The f-bomb has become so common in regular conversation that it More

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