3 tips to recognize your authentic writing voice

grillet

Your writing has a color, sound, feel…just as your natural voice. It translates who you are and is your tool for communication. Making some effort into “crafting and fine tuning” your writing voice is worth your time and energy. It doesn’t matter are you a content developer, fiction writer or you blog just for a hobby, it is essential for you to find that uniqueness inside of you – express it and let it live.

There are some tricks you can employ and that can guide you towards your better writing – better you writing.

Some of the first things you need to ask yourself is who is reading your stuff? Who is your audience? When you are writing, try to imagine your ideal reader and write according to that feeling. What would your reader interest? What would make them smile? What would make them think deeper? What kind of value you can bring to your reader?

The next important thing is to pay attention to how do you feel while writing. Does it exhaust you or it invigorates you? Is it like something you MUST do or is something playful, enjoyable for you to do?

How honest and open are you while writing? Are you always finely wrapped in your security blanket or you explore topics and genre that are out of your comfort zone? That’s good. People can sense in your writing when you are open or you are playing on the safe side. It can be a huge motivation to make your writing worth attention and reading. Being you and being vulnerable is OK – people can more relate to you in such way. We all know that our stories are governed by our subconscious mind. We all have unresolved inner conflicts, doubts, insecurities. Give yourself permission to say things in your own way. You need to own your writing and don’t hide behind other people’s opinions and words. That’s being authentic and unique.

And finally, ask yourself is this something I would like to read? Your answer is the best guidance in which direction your writing is going.

Do you think you have found your authentic writing voice? Tell us about it in the comments.

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8 tips for writing a killer author bio (even if you haven’t published anything yet)

mark-twain

Couple of years ago, a good friend of mine, an artist, came with a request to help her write a resume for an upcoming exhibition she wanted to apply for. Now, writing a resume is not such a big deal, but when you have somebody at the beginning of their artistic career (with only 1 exhibition) and this exhibition she was applying for, was supposed to be held in Louvre, then it is a big deal – at least for artists. And it has to be remarkably written, just as her masterpiece. It was quite a challenge, but I knew her for a long time (we grew up together) and we had to start from somewhere. Certain approaches we applied, eventually paid off (her bio was very much praised as her art) and these approaches can work for any type of biography – including that of a writer.

Beside some minor details about education and study field, I was not left with much to work with: only one exhibition behind her, so what do you write about then?

My first tip is:

  1. Mention the most relevant professional, educational, travel, or personal experiences: what is special about you.

It has to resonate with your audience and the occasion for which you are writing your resume (you can adjust and rewrite your bio according to the current needs). My friend, she used to travel a lot, was great admirer of history and architecture, so we included that. Same applies to writers. If you are writing non-fiction about health issues, than include your personal story. If you are writing a novel, give some juicy details what inspired the idea –  you get the picture. Your biography has to look and sound both human and professional and the trick is to find the balance between the two. Once again, it’s about pulling in the details which will resonate with your readers/editors and which fit adequately with the topics you’re writing about.

  1. Always ask someone who knows you very well about your qualities, skills, what distincts you from other people and include that in your bio.

We tend to be very subjective and overly critical. Observations from other people can be very helpful.I knew that my friend is very skilled with hands, for example (she could make anything you imagine), so I emphasized her knowledge of work with materials, tools, experimenting with textures and colors. Around that we carefully crafted a short story that was about the work she was submitting. And at the end it turned out very well.

Also, she had a lot of pieces that she developed in free time, but never seen the eyes of the public. So, the second thing we did, we developed a basic website where we published the pictures of her other work as well. We included the link in the biography so she could showcase the spectrum of her work – not only sculptures, but sketches, oil paintings, everything that represented her and her work. That contributed to her uniqueness and artistic individuality.

The same can apply to writers:

  1. If you are not already a published writer, build a basic website or blog where you can showcase excerpts of your writings (you reading this probably already have a blog) so try to reorganize your blog to showcase your best work and include the link in your bio.

Also, if you haven’t published anything yet, it’s hard to get reviews and testimonials. What you can do:

  1. Use the comments that people leave you on your website and social media as a testimonial. I’ve seen many writers – entrepreneurs doing exactly that, and it’s paying off.
  1. If you are part of any writing/literally organization, group (even forum) – list that in your bio, as it adds to your credentials. Another plus in an editor’s eyes is your affiliation with writers’ organizations. If you are not, join one! My friend was a member of national artistic network and that detail added to her professionalism.

Now, some technical stuff:

  1. Always write in third person. It kind of makes it easier to talk about yourself and your achievements. You should give it a try.
  1. Keep it short.

Editors, committees, even your readers don’t have much time to read a novel in your biography. Try to be concise, yet informative.

  1. The opening line should be straightforward and meaningful (in simple words telling who you are): if your degree is relevant, then note it.

This is where you captivate your reader (editor). You have to introduce yourself and this is usually the turning point. Never start with personal details – it will just make you look unprofessional.

For the end, apply this trick: read your bio out loud. How does it sounds, feel? You will know you nailed it, when it simply feels right!

 

 

 

 

 

An invitation to participate

As an attempt to make this blog even more dynamic, beside my regular posts on the benefits of poetry for life and business, I’m launching new category “Daily verse with purpose” that will feature exciting, motivational and inspirational verses from various poets. This is also invitation to all interested readers, poets and writers to submit their favorite rhymes, verses from different poets that they would like to see featured as “Daily verse with purpose”. Depending on the response I will try to include all your favorite poets – as we all need some additional encouragement with incoming rainy and cold days 🙂 Your suggestions you can submit to businessinrhyme at gmail dot com.

Hopefully, this will be a growing community for all of us where we could submit our own inspirational quotes, poems, verses and ext.

For starters, I’ve chosen “Climb ‘Til Your Dream Comes True” by Helen Steiner Rice.

HS Rice