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Writing Exercises - H.O.W. to Better Yourself and the World - Part Four

Updated on November 1, 2020
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Shauna writes about a variety of topics in various genres, governed by whatever motivates her muse.

This writer's office opens her voice
This writer's office opens her voice | Source

Prelude to Part Four

This is the last in the Billybuc writing exercises challenge. As I mentioned in part three, this leg required posing a question to some readers and gaining their feedback. I sent out several requests, but only two came back. Well, actually I received three responses but the last one came via a comment to one of my hubs, but fits in perfectly, so I’ll use it.

The next item on the list is:

The Question and First Response

Ask someone else what your voice is. Have them describe what you sound like. Is their description something you can live with? If not, change it!

The first to respond to my request was Mr. Challenger himself, my good friend Bill aka Billybuc. Here’s what he had to say:

“Your writer’s voice sounds like fifty-year bourbon. It sounds like a quiet Sunday with friends and family. It sounds like Vin Scully calling a Dodger game. It sounds like a combination of Mayberry and Desperate Housewives. It sounds like….Sha!”

I must admit I was a bit confused by the bourbon and Vin Scully remarks so Bill expounded:

“The things I mentioned are either American institutions or quality products….you have a comfortable voice that reminds me of all that is good in America. You remind me of home, mom and apple pie.”

Can I live with that description? Abso-damn-lutely! Coming from my dear friend and mentor, his description of my writer’s voice warms my heart, brings tears to my eyes and propels me forward.

Next in Line

Next to respond was my sweet friend Maria aka marcoujor:

“I have never actually heard your voice with my ears. Yet, I feel as though I am qualified to answer as I believe we hear each other through our written word and actions just as much.

“You, Sha…have a voice that makes me feel as though I indeed have a kindred spirit in you. You are positive, yet real about it. You speak of decency and peacefulness, even though life has not always been that way towards you. You emulate freedom, individuality and acceptance of others for their individuality. I believe I could pick your voice out of a crowd and I would hug you…real hard!”

Wow! Do I even need to tell ya’ll that I can live with this perception of my writer’s voice? Holy Mackeral! Better yet, Holy Dungeness Crab!

A Surprise

And finally, Ghost aka Ghost32, whom I love dearly, commented on my hub called “Mountains Majesty”. I hadn’t solicited him in this portion of the writer’s exercises but he left a beautiful comment as follows:

“Nice, Sha. Very nice. Fresh coffee, pen in hand, cats aplenty—what else could any writer ask?

“Aside from the text itself, your choice of Carole King’s ‘Way Over Yonder’ is just right. The sound engineering on Carole’s song is especially awesome in that the instruments are there as support for her powerful voice rather than competing with it as so many do—and in turn, your song choice (both, but to me, Carole’s most of all) plays the same support role for your writing voice.

“’Looking out the window she saw her dreams outlined in the distance.’”

“Can’t get a better opening line than that.”

I thank you from the bottom of my heart, Ghost!

Final Words

The final step in Bill’s writing exercises is to write down a description of who your ideal reader is. What are they looking for when they read? Then ask yourself if you deliver what they want to read. If not, change it!

I believe this exercise needs to be answered personally; it doesn’t really warrant a hub, I don’t think. But it is a question we must all ask ourselves and be honest with our answers. That is how we grow as writers.

I want to thank Bill for posing the challenge and all who helped me with this last exercise. Please use the comments area to tell me how you perceive my writer’s voice and to offer any suggestions for improvement.

Become better writers and become better people. That’s H.O.W. we can better ourselves and the world.

How I See My Writer's Voice

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2013 Shauna L Bowling


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