Finding Your Voice as a Writer

Photo by Lisa Fotios

One of the biggest challenges that writers face early on is finding their own unique voice. Indeed, writing is a grueling process that will leave you feeling lost most of the time. Well, the good news is that this does get better. With a little time and effort, you'll find yourself getting more comfortable with writing.

To help speed up this process, we've put together some helpful pointers to make your journey as a writer as smooth as possible. Read on for some tips on how to find your voice as a writer!

Read More Books

Photo by Janko Ferlick Good artists steal. And while we're not telling you to go out and plagiarize someone else's work, you do have a lot to gain by reading voraciously. When you think about it, you'll realize that these writers have gone through what you're going through, but have managed to triumph over the struggles that you're facing. They've managed to find their voice, meaning there will be lessons to be learned by reading their books.

But don't take our word for it, best-selling author Stephen King emphasizes the importance of reading by going so far as to say that reading is just as important as writing when you want to make it as a writer. So read everything and anything that interests you, or even books that don't, as there is always something that can be learned from them. This will develop your taste when it comes to literature and will be a formative step in establishing your voice as a writer.

Prioritize Mental Health

There is no truth behind the tortured artist stereotype. Studies have proven that taking care of yourself, both mentally and physically, will lead to better results in whatever field you choose. Psychology professionals  point out the correlation between a person’s mental health and how they perform, which means that you have to be in a good place mentally to assure success in other areas of your life. Indeed, American author Lena Dunham has highlighted the importance of taking care of one's mental health, whether it be with medication or other means.

Remember that you are a person first, and a writer second. Prioritize your mental and physical well being, and establishing your footing, as well as your voice, as a writer should follow.

Find A Writing Community

Writing can be quite isolating, and this is an issue because of two reasons. First, it can't be too healthy to write in a stuffy room for hours upon hours without any form of social interaction. Second, hearing what other people have to say about your piece could help you fine-tune aspects of it that need a little work.

MacArthur Grant awardee Kelly Link details how finding or building a writing community can do wonders for your personal growth as a writer, since these people can help you through the different stages of your writing career. Trust us when we say that while finding your voice as a writer is a personal journey, it's a journey best taken with a good community.

After reading these tips, Continuing Education has classes to help you practice these ideas to find your voice as a writer. And if you're already a CE writing student at North Seattle College, why not submit to the Continuing Education Student Writers Contest?

Article specially written for NSC Continuing Education by Reese Jones.

Photo credit #1: Lisa Fotios
Photo credit #2: Janko Ferlic
Photo credit #3: Tim Gouw