Once you start really ‘getting into’ blogging – you discover a world full of people that have something to say. There’s an insane amount of bloggers out there in the universe (a freakishly high amount of which seem to reside in India, where blogging is still hot and happening, apparently) and each and every one of them has their own (slightly unique but sometimes also very generic) view on the world. A view that they express in their choice of topics, choice of lay-out and most importantly: in their writing.
Because (as every ‘how-to-blog’ guide will tell you) the first and foremost thing one should do when they start up a blog is: ‘Find your writing voice.’
Now. Up until four months ago I had NEVER even heard of this concept of ‘voice’. Even though I’ve been writing for a good portion of my life, the terminology had never before graced my ears.
But this ‘voice’ one should have is (so I’m told in the many blogs I read on said topic) the personification of the complex human behind the screen into the text that they write. Ideally – that voice reflects personality, it conveys intent and values and it SCREAMS ‘this is me’ in every word on every page. It is the writer taken form in writing, so to say.
The thing is: it is not a natural process for everyone (seemingly) to ‘find the voice’ right from the get-go. I personally find that hard to imagine, but the number of writers that find it in their hearts to help others locate, embrace and develop their ‘voice’ is astounding. And thus, this sort of help is obviously very valuable to those who are looking and not yet finding, or who are struggling in putting ‘themselves’ into words.
I love the fact that there’s people in the blogging community who have a grip on the concept of ‘voice’ enough to think outside of the box of ‘them’ and work in terms of others to help them evolve their writing. I, however, never really had to delve into the concept of ‘voice’ however and thus am hopelessly lacking in that particular knowledge department.
Not to toot my own horn (even though that’s exactly what I’m doing) – but I’ve always written like ‘this’. The quest for my voice was never even a quest, as it’s always been a natural part of my writing. And it’s appreciated by all you lovely folk out there hitting the comment and follow buttons as I am often told (something that still makes me blush, just fyi). So voice-wise, I think I’m all set and good to go.
Sadly, though, I myself also like my particular sort of voice. A lot. I like the way I write, and I love reading other write-ups that ‘match’ my style. If prompted to describe my blog I’d say it’s a mix between cynical realism and humoristic normalcy, interwoven with a twist of psychological depth. BAM. Punchline. And that mixture of humor, sarcasm, reflection and basic-bitch-ness comes through in my choice of words (I hope). Something which I also actively look for in the (loads of) blogs that I visit.
In that I do concur with all the blog-help posts: ‘the voice‘ is the part of writing that speaks to you as a reader. That invisible link to the writer that you can (and want to) connect with. Hard to pinpoint, even harder to describe, but inevitably dreadfully important.
Thing is – I’m not really having much luck in finding similar style blogs out there, so far.
I’ve found (a sizeable amount of) gems, mind you. There’s writers I follow who see the world through my same sort of ever-doubting and smiling lens. And bloggers that have the art of journaling and brain-exploration down to a tee. There’s brilliant writers who mix poetry with daily stirrings and interesting exploits. They ARE there. But usually specialized (they only do one part, and then do that very well) or just not that committed (posting once in a blue moon, if at all). But in my search to find really likeminded souls writing in styles that match my own, I’m mostly coming up blank too much for my taste.
When it comes to ‘voice’ I’m wondering if I really do have a ‘voice’ and if so, where are the others that have a ‘voice’ like mine? Am I looking in the wrong places? Should I be checking the local McDonald’s for other fast-food junkies with a penchant for wine and blogging about dating struggles? Or am I just grasping this concept of ‘voice’ all wrong and SHOULD it be totally and entirely unique (which would mean the whole ‘niche’-finding drama a lot of people go through makes no sense at all).
Oh – and IF you do know of some blogs that strike you as similar to the weirdness going on up in here…be sure to let me know!
PS. Wanna read more about the ins and outs and hows and whys of personal blogging round here? Click on, brave warrior, click on!
* Personal blogging – Risky Business
* Personal blogging – Dirty little secret
* Personal blogging – To be recognisable or to be unique?
* Personal blogging – Out for the count
* Personal blogging – Listless
* Personal blogging – The science of stars
* Personal blogging – The personal touch
* Personal blogging – The Voice
* Personal blogging – Patterns
* Personal blogging – Art of repetition