Faber Session 21 – Voice

Ok, so lets get the cake porn out of the way first 😉

This is Orange & Almond cake with Creme Fraiche at The London Review Cakeshop. It had a tiny hint of ginger….mmmmm 😉

Ok, tonight’s session was about Voice….some snippets from my notebook:

Voice is the personality of the narrator, how the narrator (authorial voice) sounds.

The ‘voice’ of a character is different to the ‘voice’ of the author.

New writers worry too much about their voice. If you write with passion, believe what you’re writing and it comes from the heart, your voice will shine through.

Don’t try to imitate other writers, be yourself.

Think about what you’re saying and why you’re saying it.

Voice is difficult to define….but think Roth, Amis and Anne Tyler.

Your voice echoes through everything you write.

Voice is fairly easy to recognise in others work….it’s when you pick up a book and think this is different to anything I’ve ever read.

A very good example of a distinct voice in a new writer is The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz. I’ve only read the first page of the piece we were given but immediately I was struck by the unique voice used. Check out the free Kindle sample if you’ve not read it and you’ll see what I mean.

I’m not sure that I’ve developed my voice yet. I can see that most of my 1st person characters all sound like me though lol 😉 Do you feel that you have developed your voice?

Homework for next week: *gulp*
What is the theme of my book?
What is it really about?
What am I trying to say?

Faber Session 5 – Starting A Story….And Ending It

Went up to Bloomsbury a little bit earlier today as I wanted to buy a present. So it was nice to be able to walk through Bloomsbury Square in the day light! 🙂


A quick stop off in the BM to make my purchase and spotted this…..

There’s a Shakespeare exhibition on at the moment and this display of cut out houses is on the floor in the main court of the museum.

Anyway, back to class 🙂

Tonight’s session was about beginnings and endings. We talked about starting being the hardest part and one of the other students mentioned the “toxic 10” for runners. If you’re into running you’ll know exactly what this means. It’s that first 10 minutes where you’re cussing and cursing and wondering what the hell you’re doing….once you get past that it gets easier. It’s exactly the same for writers, and knowing where to start in your story can be tricky. I don’t think I’m that bad at starting, I just kind of jump in lol. Tim suggested that we play on our writing strengths in the first chapter, whatever aspect of writing we’re good at, make sure we include a lot of it 🙂

But endings….woah! That’s a whole different ball game for me. Endings should be emotionally satisfying, regardless of whether there’s a happy ending or not. Yeah, I’d agree with that! I’m forever moaning about the Anne Tyler book I read earlier this year, where a down trodden woman who’s husband, quite frankly, is a git, walks away, builds a new happy life. But at the end of the book she goes back to her boring mundane life with the husband who treats her like a skivvy….WTF?

I don’t want my book to be the type of book the reader throws across the room at the end. I want them to feel satisfied. So I guess I’ve really got my work cut out. The last chapter is my chance to tie up the loose ends. To have a resolution to the story. My biggest decision is whether to have that ending a happy one, or just a satisfying one. Should the villain turn over a new leaf? Or does the heroine walk off into the sunset, alone, but happy? Decisions decisions *bites finger nails*

Do you prefer a happy ending or don’t you mind as long as its satisfying?