Find Your Writing Voice by Mimicking the Masters

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Everyone writes with a style related to their personality. It’s their unique sound, their voice.

Finding your writer’s voice is easier than you might think.

First, read the works of great writers to find a personality similar to yours.

Identifying which family of writers you can relate with is a great way to find your voice.

Every book grows from another book, and genius is when a new mind absorbs, transforms, and finally restores in an entirely original form, the inspiration of another.

Consider Mark Twain, who never stopped inspiring authors as great as Ernest Hemingway (and many others of course).

Carpenters, painters, sculptors, dancers and other artists, they all start by imitating the craftsmen they admire. So do the same!

Every author has a teacher or two (or several), people they look up to because they admire their unique style of writing.

It is by mimicking your favorite authors that you teach yourself to write.

Choosing Your Writing Teachers

Sometimes I meet people who aspire to write for a living but read very little.

That’s too bad because nothing will ever replace the experience that you acquire by reading, because it’s by reading that you get the opportunity to observe the craft of the master, and take their techniques and make them your own.

Imitate your favorite authors. 

I didn’t say plagiarize.

No, the strategy I advise is much easier:

  1. Use them as an ideal example of how to write well.
  2. Imitate them to understand them.
  3. Detach yourself from their writing and create your own style.

If you already know your writing teachers, choose from their works and continue in the same tone and with the same style.

To make sure your style is similar to that of your favorite author, ask a friend to read your text and the teacher’s, to try to tell them apart.

If your friend can’t tell the difference between the two, you’ve just taken a monumental step in your path of writing greatness.

Me personally, I like George Orwell, Stephen King, Ernest Hemingway, Leo Tolstoy, and many others…

These were my valuable, dearly loved writing teachers, and some of them still are.

Who are yours? Have you ever tried to imitate them?

To your keyboards!

I’ll see you in the next one (:

-Josh

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