Friday, June 5, 2009

How to Find Your Writer's Voice

You know a great literary "voice" when you hear it: David Sedaris' humorous cynicism. Elmore Leonard's weary, smart-mouthed dialogue. Nick Hornby's simple yet imaginative descriptions. It's the kind of writing you should aspire to, right? Well...not quite. Each of these authors found success in part by developing their own unique voice: a writing style that helped define -- and throw the spotlight on -- their work.

Now Les Edgerton shows you how to develop a voice of your own, one that rises above the literary din because of its individuality, not in spite of it! Inside, he provides guidelines, advice and dozens of exercises for recognizing and developing a natural style that will make your characters, stories and dialogue better and more memorable. Whether you write fiction, non-fiction or poetry, Finding Your Voice is a must for your personal library. Let's face it -- editors, agents and readers all want to read something fresh and new. By finding your voice, you'll be giving them exactly what they want!

The Famous Author and I met Les this week at Writers Retreat Workshop, a place where writers -- young and old, published and unpublished -- gather every spring to take classes, share manuscripts, and, with Les anyway, drink Jack Daniels. The man has stories, people, and they ain't all about writing. Wow! Buy this man a drink someday. You will be entertained and informed. Just don't call him by his real name, Leslie.

In case you can't afford the book, here's what Les told us all last night: You want to find your own voice? Sit down and write a scene, talking to your best friend. He knows you. He knows the people you're telling the story about. You don't have to explain anything, or worse, give backstory. Your friend already knows it.

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