It took a thirty-day writing challenge for me to find my voice. Luckily for you, it wasn’t publishing every day for a month that made the difference.
What helped me find my voice was figuring out exactly who I was trying to reach.
When you first start writing, you tend to over research, and a lot of generic advice tells you to find your voice. You know, that unique thing that every writer apparently automatically has. Finding your voice can be pretty tricky, especially if you’re not sure where to look.
I found my voice by figuring out who my ideal reader was.
An ideal reader is the person you want to reach with your writing. Knowing who this person is will inform your writing style.
I want to teach my younger self how to write. If I were doing that, in reality, I would sit myself down in a coffee shop and discuss nuts and bolts. So my voice is informal but informational.
When I started writing for my ideal reader I quickly realised that the way I speak to people in real life and on paper is incredibly similar. I just have the benefit of being able to edit the paper version of myself. So for me, finding my voice wasn’t all that hard, it doesn’t have to be difficult for you either.
The first thing understanding your ideal reader does is inform you of the formality of your writing.
If you want to reach academics, then academic writing will be your standard. If you want to teach a young audience, an informal approach will serve you best.
If you’re not sure about what style of writing your audience enjoys reading, then do a bit of research into the demographic and begin to find your voice by experimenting with writing techniques that people group enjoy.
It will take practice, and using your voice might feel unnatural or uncomfortable at first. Still, eventually, if you give it enough time and experimentation, you’ll settle into your new voice quickly enough.
As you practice, a distinct voice will emerge in your writing.
Happy hunting, and as always, I cannot wait to see you on the bookshelf.