Finding the Character’s Voice

Posted: April 20, 2015 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

Finding a character’s voice should be easy, right? If you came up with the character wrote a profile, with their personality and background you should know how that character sounds. Simple enough, right?

WRONG!

Well for me that is wrong. I know my characters pretty well, and when I think about their voice I can name only one that I know for sure how that character sounds, acts, etc. Every other character while I know their personality, I would say my voice is their voice and that is wrong. Before I go too far, let me tell you this is not me telling you how to go about finding your character’s voice, I am looking for that myself.

What brought up this thought on character voice? Why that is a great question, thank for asking. I am getting ready to start writing the first book in Parable of Light & Dark. The book will be mostly in first person and I thought about how unique my character Kiana is. She is not like most of my main characters, the biggest difference is she is a girl. No, no, no, no…no. I am not saying I have never written a girl in any of my other stories, I have, but never has a majority of the story been told from their view point. This is going to be fun and somewhat challenging. This will not be my first time writing in first person, but the last book I wrote in first person was very much me and not the character. It is kind of hard to separate character’s voice from your own when you and the main character are very much a like.

One of my goals for this book besides writing it, is to not just write the first draft to get it out like it has been in the past. The goal is to write it fast as I can, but keeping it quality writing so I have less to fix in draft two. What that means is I need to nail Kiana’s voice pretty much in the first draft. I know I don’t need it to be perfect or dead on, but I need to get bare rhythm of how she speaks, and how her personality comes through it all. I am not going to deny this will be a challenge, mostly because I set myself up to fail from past writing to just write and not think about voice, because I am thinking is get the story out and fix it later. I can’t do that, I need to slow down to figure this out.

I searched the almighty Google engine for help on this, and found some other blog posts on finding your characters voice, and exercises to help. One idea I think I am going to try first is writing a journal entry, which is one of the exercises I came across, in the characters voice about the story. Hopefully, I will write some of the actual entries that will appear in the book while doing this exercise. There will be a few, but Kiana has a lot of things going on so I might find some interesting tidbits on events she is going through before the book starts. I’ll keep you posted.

If you have any thoughts or ideas on finding a character’s voice post them in the comments.
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