Voice is your unique view, your writing personality. It's created through the use of language, phrasing, tone, mood, and feelings.
Think about how you describe your favorite writers. The adjectives you use probably characterize their voices – funny, heartfelt, easy-going, technical, friendly, somber, optimistic, bitter, or opinionated. You come to expect a particular voice in all their writing and probably find mismatched pieces less interesting or harder to follow.
Some of the ways to create a strong personal voice are through language, storytelling, and emotion.
Use language that supports your personality. For example, the "Intelligent Marketer's" language and choice of words will be very different from the "Street Smart Marketer." One might describe a campaign as "ineffective" while the other might say it was an "epic fail." Or describing a ladybug as "cute" contradicts the "Cranky Gardener's" voice.
Write for your ideal reader. Think of the type of person you want to reach and write as if you are speaking directly to him or her. Use the words and phrasing your reader uses and understands. Will he be more interested in a humorous piece or is he expecting a strong opinion? Is she looking for a world view or does she prefer a local perspective? Use your voice to help you connect with your audience.
When you tell a story from your perspective, every description and sentence is unique to you and your experience. While your view may be similar to someone else's, you bring your own personality, feelings, and reactions to the events. Ask two people to describe their experience at a convention and one might focus on the networking and social events while the other talks about the technical presentations.
Writing that expresses and evokes emotion is better received and remembered. Writing with honest emotion shows that you care about the subject, that it's important to you. Readers who respond emotionally become invested in what you have to say. At first, you may find it difficult to reveal so much of yourself in your writing, but when you start getting a good response you'll find it's worth it.
Creating your personal writing voice may take some trial and error. Start with what feels most natural to you and pay attention to the results. Note your readers' response to a particular type of content or technique and repeat what they respond to positively. Ask friends or colleagues to describe your writing to see if their description matches the voice you tried to convey.
When your voice is clear and consistent it becomes part of your distinctive brand.
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