Friday, October 31, 2008

Ah, I Hear Voices

If you've ever been in a conversation with a writer, you'll slowly wonder if she's actually going insane as she prattles on about the characters that talk to her or interrupt what she's doing. What is it really that goes on in our brains? Well, there are characters and plots roaming around up there. Do we actually hear "voices"? Yes and no. The voices don't tell me to do things or try to control my life. What they are are the characters I've made up revealing themselves to me. They are ideas, conversations, discussions, concepts. They are integral to me actually being able to write. I don't tell the story. My characters do. I don't plot the story. I may have a plan that the characters may or may not choose to do as they reveal their personalities and what makes them special.

Is this the unique voice editors and agents go on about? I think so. Because I have a certain style of writing, but the way it's written is determined by the character whose point of view I'm in. Each character thinks about things differently, expresses him/herself differently. They build the novel not be. I just take dictation from the voices in my head and help them when they get stuck on a word or two. To work on your voice, you have to listen to the characters or in other words walk the story in his/her shoes.

1 comment:

Chuck said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one that hears voices!!! Great article! I too have to hear their voice, see the situation through their eyes and run on their personality. I've never submitted yet but my wip will be my first. I hope that an editor likes of as much as me!