I've got Jennifer Hudson's Christmas special on as I'm writing this. What a Voice!! She truly sings like an angel.
Of course, I giggled when I thought "What a Voice!". As writers, we worry about a slightly different kind of voice.
Voice is a difficult thing to teach. It's easier to find examples and read them aloud, then contrast different styles. The kids in my class tend to pick up the different kinds of voice rather quickly when I read short snippets of a variety of texts.
They all have their preferences. Most kids this year prefer short, snappy sentences with sly humour mixed in. However, lyrical sentences can grab them as well. When we studied opening lines last year, the class favourite was from Ray Bradbury's Farenheit 451.
"It was a pleasure to burn. It was a special pleasure to see things eaten, to see things blackened and changed. With the brass nozzle in his fists, with this great python spitting its venomous kerosene upon the world, the blood pounded in his head, and his hands were the hands of some amazing conductor playing all the symphonies of blazing and burning to bring down the tatters and charcoal ruins of history."
They loved the contrast of the sentence lengths, the imagery. They all decided these short lines spoke to them. They loved the voice, and referred back to the image several times over the year.
A strong voice can be compelling. It's something we all strive for.
Whose voice do you most admire? Do you find it difficult to identify your own voice?
On a side note, thanks to Elizabeth Spann Craig at Mystery Writing is Murder for the Blogging Writer Award. Check out the award she designed herself on the sidebar! Thanks as well to Kristi Faith over at RAW (Random Acts of Writing) for awarding me the One Lovely Blog Award, also on the sidebar. These are fantastic writer friends. If you haven't checked out their sites, do yourself a favour & pop on over!