“The writer’s voice is the individual writing style of an author, a combination of idiotypical usage of syntax, diction, punctuation, character development, dialogue, etc., within a given body of text (or across several works). Voice can be thought of in terms of the uniqueness of a vocal voice machine.”

source: Pub(lishing) Crawl, Jun 24, 2013. www.publishingcrawl.com/2013/06/24/literary-voice-developing-it-and-defining-it/

After reviewing several definitions of ‘voice’, this one struck a chord. I just love it. It defines writer’s voice  in a simple succinct way. Voice is something that needs to be recognized by the writer then cultivated and strengthened to evolve into one’s true authentic sound.

Think about it…

Can you hear the voice of an author that you are familiar with come through in their writing?

Can you identify the voice of a beloved character in a story by a few words or a short phrase?

Do you ever read something where you are familiar with the actual sound of a person’s voice so you hear them in your head?

I can still hear one of my high school teachers summoning the class with the moniker, “People”,  my mother’s charge to “mind your manners”, or even the distinct mewing of my daughter’s cat. Each voice is unique in sound and style.

Voice gives depth to writing through familiarity, rhythm, feeling, and emotion.  A writer has a duty to be true to their own voice. Recently, I read a post from a literary agent who rejected a submission because the writer crafted a story that was “too close for comfort” in voice and style to an established and well-known author. Find your voice and share it!



Amanda Kirkham, M.Ed., is an elementary school teacher, writer, and aspiring author. She is a triplet, a runner, and perpetual student. Her motto is “Never stop learning!” One of her favorite childhood pastimes was to read every side of the cereal box and digest the information. She lives in Georgia with her husband and four children.