What voice?

January 4, 2007

I have two distinct voices when it comes to writing, and they are at odds with one another.

Voice One is melancholy, somber, contemplative. I write in this voice typically when I’m working on a piece in the 1st person. Voice Two is much more fun…breezy…almost a part of the “Chick Lit” chorus. Voice Two feels more comfortable when I’m writing in 3rd person.

It’s a minor struggle for me to choose which voice best tells the story I am wanting to tell, which of these voices would appeal most to a reader…and which voice I can sustain through the whole piece. Moreover, I worry a bit about being authentic. I’d hate for someone to read something of mine one day and think, “Wait a minute here. She used to be funny! What’s with the gloomy gus routine?!”

What’s better? To pick a voice and stick with it, or to be flexible and use differing tones for different pieces? Not sure yet, but I’m working on it.

Hmmm, how to sign off on this post:

“My goodness, I apologize,” I murmured, frowning. “I must go. But know that I am thinking of you.” —> voice 1

or

“Okey dokey, artichokey!” she cried merrily, waving her hand. “Catch you later.” –> voice 2

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