Find Your Philosophy & You Find Your Writers Voice

VoiceI’m grappling. Not the fun, half-naked, sweat soaked, rough and tumble kind of grapple. The unwillingly blindfolded, crashing into table corners while searching for something as immutably difficult to find as the holy grail.
My writers ‘voice’.
I know. Collective sigh. Honestly I’ve lost count of the number of posts, quotes and motivational spiels I’ve read on finding your writers voice.
And did any of them help? Nope. But not because they weren’t right, or helpful. But because I was the blind leading the blind in a one-legged donkey race for Quills R’ Us. I didn’t know what I was looking for.  In fact, I hadn’t found so much as a single proverbial needle from an entire field of haystacks.

But why hadn’t I found it? I’d been writing a while, I’d racked up at LEAST 10,000 hours of writing time. So why did I still feel like the fat kid that never gets picked for the sports team?
image curtesy of creative commons (flickr)

Image curtesy of creative commons (flickr)

Because I didn’t know who I was. Yeah, seriously. There in lies the gooey centre of this voice mystery.

Who am I?

Who are you?!

Actually, who the fuck are any of us?

Maybe we’re just a seething mass of angry carbon molecules having a dance off in the Earth championships. The winner gets a body, the loser gets to be the arse hole of a sniff happy Shih Tzu.

Maybe not.

Because if we were, we wouldn’t all be haunted by the ‘who am I’ question. It doesn’t matter whether you’re three years old and figuring out that you have a penis while Mary Sue over there most certainly does not, or if your twenty-three and realising (when that first gas bill arrives) that being an adult sucks. You’re still afflicted by the ‘woah shit’ moment of ‘who the fuck am I?’.

I hate to break it to you, but I can’t tell you. Shit, I’m only just figuring it out myself!


Sacha’s still loading….. Image curtsey of

We try to define ourselves constantly. Tick box, this, conform to that. Jock. Math Geek. Science Nerd. Goth. You can’t be a fantasy writer if you’re a mommy blogger. You can’t be a writing craft author if you also pen memoirs. It’s all bollocks.

I don’t know about you, but I’m far too curvy to be a 467 page novel, I don’t fit any bloody genre, thanks. But maybe because I don’t. It’s means I do. Stay with me.

image curtsey of pixabay

Image curtsey of pixabay

What if we have had our heads shoved so far up our tick box genre asses, we’ve done it all wrong. What if, in defining genres by ‘type’ of book, we have missed the point of writing completely.When you meet a new person for the first time, you do the standard arse sniff assessing each other and how likely you are to get on by your interests – maybe your both fantasy books, or non-fiction history books. But that doesn’t define your friendship. That doesn’t mean you’re a sure thing for the bookies. I ain’t going to bet on your friendship because you both happen to like the latest whimsical fad.

What about that friend of yours who is twenty years your senior (or junior) and a total freaking oddball. You know the one. With crazy hair and a ragged look in their eye. They’re more likely to be a non-fiction book on the ancient art of burp capture. But you love them anyway. Because of what’s on the inside. Because of who they are.


Who we are isn’t a shopping list of craze oriented likes and dislikes. Who we are, who we REALLY are, is our principles. The values we live our life by. Our sense of right and wrong. Justice. Are you innately angry? Kind. Compassionate? Maybe you live a life of servitude for others. Or perhaps you think nothing of stealing because the world owes you anyway. This is your own personal philosophy.

What’s the secret ingredient to magic writing voice sauce? That’s the thing. There is no secret. No magic pixie dust. Just pure unadulterated you. You are your own magic sauce. You just have to find the core drivers that fuel your interaction with life. Find it and it will define your voice.

Find your why.

Not just why are you telling this story, but why you write – what fuels it? And I don’t mean your poison of choice and passion doesn’t count. I mean what is in the core of your soul?

Love? Curiosity? Fear? Guilt?

But of course life isn’t just as simple as ‘finding your voice’. Psht Please. We are writers after all. We must endure conflict and strife in order to bleed masterpieces onto our pages.

No. Once you have found your voice, you then have to accept it’s yours. That’s harder than finding it in the first fucking place.

Vivienne Cass (1979) created a model of identity acceptance. Although originally to describe LGBT people’s journey to accepting their sexuality, it has been used across a variety of ‘identities’ and I think it describes a writers path to discovering their identity too. I’ve tweaked it to represent the writers journey to discovering their voice.

Stage 1: Identity Awareness/confusion – The individual is aware of being a writer and that voices exist but unsure of what theirs is.

Stage 2: Identity Comparison – The individual compares their voice to others, professionals or those they look up to. Perhaps even wanting it, or mimicking it

Stage 3: Identity ToleranceThe individual acknowledges and tolerates that their voice is different to others.

Stage 4: Identity Acceptance – The individual accepts their new voice and begins to become active in the “writing community.” Using and sharing their voice.

Stage 5: Identity Pride – The individual becomes proud of their voice and becomes fully immersed in “writing culture.”

Stage 6: Identity Synthesis – The individual fully accepts their voice identity and synthesizes their former “non voice” and their new voice identity.

What do you think? Does this ring true for you? One of my fave editors has an awesome post on finding your voice check it out here.


Have I found my voice? Actually, I appear to have found two. Which has opened a whole other shit storm in a can for me. Right now, I’m more confused than Twoface.

I write non-fiction fuelled by an innate and utterly persistent curiosity. That’s the value that drives it. But it’s styled with a caustic wit and peppered with whatever capricious tangents my mind happens to fancy.


I write fiction fuelled by: cuddly toys, doe eyed teenaged looks, lust, secret guilty teenage pleasures, a sprinkling of meliorism and unwavering hope.

UGH. So full of daisies and pink fluff. God I hate that shit.

Except that I don’t because it’s the only diamond tipped drill bit strong enough to chisel through my cold dead heart.

Curiosity V.S. Hope

I mean seriously. They couldn’t be more different and I feel like my non-fiction voice is stronger than my fiction. What if I wrote fiction like I wrote non-fiction…? Should I? oh god. Should I? Excuse me whilst my brain dribbles out my ears after a shitsplosion of confused.

So who am I?

Sacha Black? Umm, there’s a minor technicality here that might possibly, under strict circumstances mean that there is a slight bending of what is classified as the truth, here.

Ok, how about:

A mum. A wife. A Project Manager. *shrugs*. Sure, but that’s not who I am. That’s what I do.

Ok, I’ll try again:

A lesbian. A mixed race, twenty-five, ok fine, twenty-nine year old. Still wrong. That’s part of my identity but isn’t who I am…

How about:

I’m the girl who cowers behind her laptop screen,  preaches a good preach, but is secretly riddled with self-doubt and plagued by a lack of confidence. See, that’s all true but still doesn’t fit.

Who am I?

I am the curious girl clinging to her meliorist nature who, despite her caustic wit and twisted outlook, will never lose hope. Yeah. That’s who I am.

So tell me, (in the comments). Who are you really? What one value fuels your writing? Have you found your voice?
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  1. Another cracking post, Ms. Black! I think my philosophy is curious, confused, seeking clarity and always motivated by the good in living, the endless possibility in the experience and a love of the moment. I don’t really know if that comes across in my writing–but most of the time my writing is inspired by these elements. Bookmarking!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh gosh, thank you 😍. Although it felt more like brain vomit than a coherent post! That’s a lot of drivers – what if you had to pick one….. 😋😋. Although I think if I’m not mistaken it boiled down to Curiosity and love? Hmm, I think your marketing book isn’t fuelled by curiosity but by pure ambition… Which all things considered is a good thing!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah. I think the philosophy or values that always lie behind my work are the Cs mentioned above. Driver — probably a quest for clarity… setting something straight. I like to work through a puzzle and get a clear image out of it. As for writing the marketing book, I don’t think the driver for writing it was ambition as much as these ideas are knowledge that I have long carried with me and it’s worth sharing… And I have shared it, taught it in classrooms, multiple times. Publishing it, though? Putting it on a stage and making it public? I definitely think that’s motivated by ambition. Either way, it’s a good post, Sacha–stream of consciousness at times, but that didn’t diminish its value.🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ah I meant ambition in the sense you are sharing ambition through the book with other writers. They will read it because of their ambition to be better to publish more. Its there because writers have ambition, or at least thats how I read the theme.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Well, never grow up, as they say, it’s a trap!
    But…voice. Who am I? I’m me. No more, no less. If I sit down and write a piece purely for my own pleasure, with no thought of it being published or even read by anyone else, I use a particular voice. This is the voice that I try to insert into my so-called serious writing. I suppose it could be described as honesty? I’m not sure, there.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This post rang more bells than a 49 bus!
    I have come to the conclusion, quite recently, that maybe we never get to know who we really are. I don’t, simply because every time I try to figure it out, something changes and its impossible. I used to think it was odd that I couldn’t identify me, but I’ve come to terms with it now. I’m just me, like it or lump it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. haha! more bells than a 49 bus! hilarious. Actually I think that’s a really valid point. Maybe we don’t. I mean we shed our entire skin every 7 years. Every cell in our body is replaced. that means technically we are an entirely new person every 7 years. No wonder we change and can’t keep up with knowing who we are.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I think the question is ridiculous – as if any of us only has one voice! That’s like saying “give me the box of chocolates, but I’m only eating the strawberry ones”. There may be recurring themes and jokes within us, and things that we’re particularly passionate about (zombies, wizards, golf, whatever), but as long as you’re writing what feels true to you, who gives a shit? (Language, incidentally, which I wouldn’t use at work, or in my children’s stories… because we use the appropriate voice for the situation)

    Your “voice” is a part of you, but you are not your voice.

    Isn’t the business of writing difficult enough without us keep throwing extra obstacles out into the road before us, tying ourselves in knots to define and identify each element? Just spend the time writing, and let someone else worry about it!🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Actually, I’ve been known to only eat the strawberry ones! 😋😂.

      Seriously though, I take your point. But for me, I am still growing and learning about writing, I adore dissecting the writing process and writing in itself. For me that’s how I develop. And I want to know what’s at the core of my writing. If I know myself, I know my writing which hopefully means I’ll be true to it, rather than aspiring to write like someone else or kicking another’s style because ‘I think that’s what proper writing sounds like’

      If you’re confident enough to not do that and be yourself always, then I bow at your feet. But I’m not. I have no confidence and even having seen a few versions of synopses I’ve written for submission I’ve realised I was writing what ‘I thought a synopsis should sound like’ rather than just writing for me and using my own voice. Hence the introspection and now the latest draft is much more authentic.

      I don’t think knowing what your voice is, is an obstacle, knowledge is power.

      BUT, I do agree that it’s just another thing to worry about which isn’t helpful as a writer. We do spend far too long worrying. Or perhaps that’s just me….

      Liked by 3 people

      1. It’s not just you at all… Most of my comments were aimed squarely at myself!

        While I share most of your introspection and doubt, isn’t there a danger of all this looking at voice from the wrong angle – knowledge is good, but it can also be an impediment… sometimes you have to turn off that targeting computer and just know that your experience of bullseyeing those poor wamp rats in your T-16 is enough experience to blow up the biggest gun in the galaxy

        Liked by 1 person

      2. HA! well lots of people agree with you and are commenting that way. I guess we all learn and think and analyse differently. For me, dissecting and over thinking is the only way I can learn. It’s not meant to pressure any one into doing it this way, I’m just sharing my own journey.

        Liked by 2 people

  5. Most interesting – but I think you’re over-thinking it. Just write. You can’t ‘find’ your voice, it just IS. It’s how the words come out, and if you try to make it anything other than what comes naturally, it won’t be any good. Believe me, I’ve tried to write chick lit. It comes out too real, not frothy enough. I’ve tried to write in a ‘literary fiction’ style, but I got too chatty. Your ‘voice’ already exists, it’s the one people read in your blog posts.

    Honestly, Sacha, when I started writing there was no internet, there were hardly any writing classes and certainly no blogs. You just wrote. Spend the time you’re spending thinking about this, on your book. That way, it’ll get finished.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Ahh, but my tagline wouldn’t work if I wasn’t a thinker! It’s in my blood. I love nothing more than a good ponder!

      I’m not sure I agree though. I don’t think I had a voice when I started writing. My writing wasn’t good enough quality. It was full of telling, not showing, over exposition and terrible grammar. I think having a voice is something that develops over time as the quality of your writing improves. Sure, ‘you’ are always in there, writing those words and having an opinion. But unless you can coherently put that opinion forward, then how can your voice show through?

      Sure, ‘I’ exist, and my opinions exist. But that doesn’t mean my clarity of voice came across.

      And I 100% agree – to just let what comes out naturally ‘be’ that’s the point of this post. I was trying to find out what ‘natural’ was for me, rather than emulate someone else. I guess, my method of finding that is just a little different. For me blogging is a method of learning, and growing as a writer. Sure, I could spend more time writing, and less time blogging. But if I didn’t dissect my thoughts and lessons, I wouldn’t learn anything. I did it all through school and uni. It’s not right for everyone, but it seems to work for me.🙂❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I get what you mean – and yes, if it works for you to have a good ponder, it’s all good!!! Everyone finds their way. When I wrote my first novel, I think I found my ‘voice’ in the same way I do now; just by becoming the person I was writing, in my head. I don’t think you’ve ever read any of my books? I nearly always write from multiple POV and the ‘voice’ changes with each character – so maybe, yes, my own voice only comes out when I blog!! xx


      2. Hi Terry, no I haven’t not yet. But your books are on my TBR pile, the problem is I don’t get much chance to read. My goal is a pitiful 12 books this YEAR. I’m hoping to read a couple more than that. But the child keeps me busy and I tend to sacrifice reading for writing time given all the posts I try to read as well.

        I think its fascinating. I am sure there are as many writing processes, voice discoveries and editing methods as there are books in the world.😀


  6. I love what you wrote! I love this “Who am I” questions! I already wrote a post about exactly that (coming up in two weeks… had to schedule since I am gonna be damn busy the coming weeks). It is about that!
    Actually, you are that being that never dies but the person you are is the person you feel you are!

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  7. First – I am not even close to being twenty years your senior, thank you very much and my non-fiction of choice is a combination of advanced material science and quantum theory for the layman. Though you do have a good point. It is probably time I did something different with my hair.

    Who am I? I am me. Mom, Daughter, Sister, Writer, Advancer, Nerd and Flow-charter-extraordinaire. I am a goal-setter, control freak, and hopeful realist. I write for me, and those like me . . . as few as they might be.🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. haha, are you even 30? you look 12! I bet you still get ID’d. You look amazing considering you have two kids. How do you do it? I want your secret. I DEMAND IT! quantum theory? OMG. would love to be pointed in that direction love a bit of science.

      Whats an advancer?


      1. Sorry, just lucky I guess (and thank you!). Grandpa is turning 101 this year and could pass for 80. I don’t get carded as much as I used to as the kids are now trying their hardest to suck my youth away at an alarming rate.

        I’m currently reading Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs: The Astounding Interconnectedness of the Universe by Lisa Randall. My eldest’s current cartoon of choice is Uncle Grandpa featuring a talking slice of pizza named Pizza Steve so I had to pick something equally strong to counter its effects on my sanity. (The 4yo’s favorites are much more tolerable – except he is big on repeats)

        I’m actually an Advancer tending toward creation on some personality wheels. Advancers communicate the creator’s big new idea to the rest of the team and rally troops which is a trait that comes in handy considering a large part of my day job work consists of working with remote teams.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. WOW 101? What a hero, if he was a Brit he’d have had a birthday card from the queen last year! Umm, that cartoon book sounds…. lol :p

        I am not 100% sure I understand what an advancer is yet… misreading that it sounds religious! But its an engineering thing right? You’re a manager in charge of making shit happen.😀


      3. It used to be that the President would send you a letter too. If he has, Grandpa hasn’t made a big deal about it.

        The show is…special.

        Ha! Yeah you totally misread that, although starting my own cult doesn’t sound half bad at the moment. I could use more kool aid in my life. I meant it just like your second interpretation, but sometimes it is also shit happens – I manage.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Ugh! I’ve written so many articles and posts about identity. Who am I??? And the stress of trying to capture all that in a bio or About page.

    As far as voice, I agree with Terry and Mary. You can’t really “find” your voice because you never lost it. It’s yours. I’ve taught writing in a variety of settings and this always comes up. This is yet another post I have written that’s sitting in my drafts folder because I’m a slow blogger.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I thought of you when I wrote this. Maybe find isn’t the right word. But my voice hasn’t always ‘been’ like so many people are saying.

      Are you the same Sarah you were 10 years ago? I doubt it. I’m certainly not. I am only just discovering who I am, so how can my voice have always been?! If I am still growing and changing as a person then I suspect my voice is too. My writing sure as shit don’t sound the same as it did when I first started writing, but its more than just grammar and bad word order, its a maturity that has filled my voice, a knowing, a different slant on life. I suspect my voice will continue to change as I do.


    1. Ah… oops. Well, by the sounds of it I need to keep my trap shut anyway! So I’d ignore me :p. I guess this was more of a stream of consciousness anyways. I feel like we grow and develop throughout our lives, so I just don’t believe my voice ‘has always been’ it hasn’t. I’m not the same person I was 10 years ago so I highly doubt my voice is the same either! p.s. you’re awesome too!❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. OMG!!!! WHAT A GOOD POINT so much so I had to capitalise my response!! I hadn’t even contemplated my characters having a voice! Oh gawwwwd. Let’s not open that can of worms before my head really does explode!

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I agree with everyone – Oh God I’m a people pleaser! Your voice is simply a reflection of who you and how you perceive things. It naturally comes out whether you ponder it or not. For me, I think my problem is while I look outward at other people they look interesting but I think I’m incredibly boring. (OK most friends think I’m a little bonkers). But that’s my point how others see you (hear your voice) is probably different from the self critical way you see(hear) yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha! ohhh you people pleaser you! :p I think it probably does come out whether you ponder it or not, but I still don’t think it showed for me until recently. When I look back at some of my early posts I cringe because they don’t sound like me, the stuff I write now embodies me much more I think because it sounds like me. Or at least I figure it does anyway. Maybe it doesn’t! I think that’s a great point about perception though – I have NO idea how I am perceived I probably think people see me one way and actually its something totally different. Hmm…. I shall ponder that… :p


  10. So true, Sacha! When I first started writing, I found I was emulating my favourite authors of the time. I didn’t do it consciously, it was just because I didn’t know how to write, and was led by what I had read. I didn’t write at all through my late 20s and 30s. When I took it up again in my 40s, I had developed a greater sense of self awareness, my life experiences had helped shape me, and I began to develop my own style. This has continued to grow. I actually think it changes and continues to develop as we hone our writing skills and with our experiences. I’m glad you’ve found your voice. I feel like I’ve seen it developing in the time that I have followed your blog. Keep up the good work!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Ali, that means a lot🙂❤ I agree about the non conscious thing – I reckon I used to try and do it too – although unsuccessfully.

      It's lovely to hear that you have seen it grow too – means I'm not going insane! haha

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for the reblog Jacqui, really appreciate it and your lovely comment. I totally agree, and I think maybe that’s the realisation I am coming too – my voice has changed over the years so much that I struggled to keep up. maybe its slowed down now and thats why I feel like i have found it.

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  11. You are who you are, you write the way you write. It’s passionate and unrestrained, questioning and demanding, defiant and defensive. Just leave it at that or it begins to look like you’re fishing for compliments🙂

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    1. Oh. That wasn’t my goal at all. I’ve been trying to work out who I am as a writer. I’ve sort of fallen into a pit of hating every word I pen and I was trying to get back to the root of why I write. What was it that drove me to pick up then pen in the first place and who have I become now. To be honest this was a bit of a stream of consciousness :s


      1. Course it was. What I said was tongue in cheek (as I think you know, hope so anyway). But I do mean what I said. There’s a really passionate force that comes over in whatever you write. You call it stream of consciousness, but if that isn’t the real you, what is? Just go with the flow/stream and it’ll take you there🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Actually, for once, I thought you were being serious! :p mind you, I did not sleep last night, barely scraped 4 hours, so I am basically delirious today and therefore hoping I can be forgiven!

        What an insightful point. I hadn’t thought of that… grr, and its SUCH an obvious one too. If I am stream of consciousnessing (that’s totally a word) then it must be me. BUT I definitely don’t think that had I written a stream of consciousness a few years back it would have sounded like me, so maybe what I should have said, is I finally feel like I can write in a way that reflects what I actually mean/think/am…?!


      3. Maybe that’s because if you set out to write a stream of consciousness, it isn’t a stream, it’s a main road with traffic lights and different lanes and bus stops. It gets contrived. I think that’s the trick we have to learn, to stop placing artifice between what we think, what we think we ought to be thinking, if you see what I mean.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yes, I 100% get you. I have spent too much of my life as a people pleaser -something I am only just coming to realise actually. This is quite an inspirational comment actually Jane. Thank you – you have given me a little piece of confidence back by giving me permission to be myself. Plus – I love the road analogy!


      5. Good! I don’t know whether I’m true to myself, doing things right or saying anything that hasn’t been said a million times before, but I do know that it’s the only way I can say what I have to say. I live out on a limb linguistically. My English is in a time warp as I haven’t lived in UK for almost thirty years and only ever go back for funerals. I talk funny. Or bookish. Or Franglais. To try and write like a contemporary YA author, only a couple of years away from being YA herself, would be flogging a dead horse in my case. We do what comes naturally and just hope that enough people actually enjoy reading it to make it worthwhile.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. I think you are, but then I haven’t met you so I can’t really say. Have you retained your English Accent? I think you’re right though – just do what comes naturally and that can’t help but be you. I will chill out! :p


      7. I’ve heard myself speak because I do voice overs for commercial films occasionally. The northern base is there, but attenuated, with a lot of Irish idiom, a bit of London, and an awful lot of Franglais because I’m lazy. The ‘who am I’ question is one I never ask because there’s nobody to give me a sensible answer.

        Liked by 1 person

      8. ooooh that’s fascinating – I used to do voiceovers as a kid. I had an agent for a while, did some TV work but primarily voice overs. Now I would LOVE to hear to your voice – I have no clue what that mix would sound like😀


  12. Oh God, okay here goes. Who am I? I am passionate, therefore, I write with a passion. I believe in justice, truth, kindness, therefore I write about those things. I believe in other worlds either within ours or apart from us, therefore, I write about those things. I am hopeful even when there seems to be no hope, (hell that can be tiring.) I cry at ghost programmes where the spirits call for help but at the same time, I want certain people in the spotlight to just disappear down the rabbit hole and stay there. And now I`ve confused myself whoever that is.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Adele, are you in the UK? Are you coming to the bash? I’d love to meet you. I love the things you believe in. Justice is so important. Well so many people on here have said I just need to ignore it and just ‘be’ if you just ‘be’ then you will come through in your words.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am in the uk Sacha, Scotland. I can`t come to the bash unfortunately not this year, due to finances and not being good with my health. I wish I could, I`d love to meet you too and get a chance to put the world to rights.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. For me, it’s always been my writing voice that writes what I write. As I write, it’s the voice in my head (me talking) that communicates with my fingers which in turn pushes the keys on the keyboard. Like all of us, that voice can know about vasts amount of stuff, or very little. Take my voice for example. Doesn’t know anything about foreign languages or Woodwork, so hardly says anything about it. Knows quite a bit about Dr.Who and other Sci-Fi TV programmes, books, and movies, so says a lot about it.

    My voice is me. It can only be me unless I decide to try and trick it (which sometimes works).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think that’s a lovely point Hugh. I guess maybe I felt that my voice, by that I mean what I wrote on the page, didn’t use to reflect the me (the me talking in my head) but now I feel like it does. I don’t quite know why that was the case though, just something else for me to ponder!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I forgot to add that one of the best pieces of advice I’ve been given by so many writers, authors and bloggers is to write as yourself, and not to try and write as somebody else. Does that make sense? Is it anything even to do with your post? I don’t know, but I’ve never forgotten that piece of advice.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yep, 100% fits. In that model by vivienne cass she refers to the whole comparison thing, and often new writers unwittingly mimic writers they look up to. Its a great piece of advice but I suspect its easier said than done.

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      3. awww. That really is such a compliment. I love that. It’s true too – I reckon I could spot your work now, its the endings – they are so unique. Dead give away for a ‘hugh’ story.😀

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Hi, as usual you write a great post. The question of who we are baffles all of us, but perhaps not as much as why we’re here.
    The thing I think with most of us that think like you (and I suffer from this) is that none of societie’s many boxes ‘fit’ you and you maybe feel like there should be a place that fits you. You’re special and you get to make your own box, or better still you don’t have one. You define you and as such your writing is a genre all of it’s own perhaps? It could be a bit of one or the other… but your writing and life is Sacha Black genre. I know this doesn’t help you much but do and feel what’s right for you, sing the song that you want to and be proud of it becasue no-one else will sing it.

    The other thing to finding out about what you are, is to perhaps work out what you are not. At least then you can narrow it down?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That, is an exceptional point – who am I not… I hadn’t thought of that. *scratches head* thanks for prodding my grey cells I am going to be thinking about that all day now! and thank you too, for your lovely comment❤. I agree about that question though. I suspect they are one in the same, if we know the answer to one, we can probably figure out the answer to the other. Which comes first though is a bit chicken and egg for me.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m always happy to offer the different angle to a friend, I enjoy reading your posts a lot so interesting with you is something I enjoy.

        You’ll have to let us know what you come up with as I for one and interested in knowing who you are and what Sacha world is🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. aww, well you might have to wait a while, I haven’t the foggiest who I am! The mad one in the corner with a goofy grin whose up to no good! :p Guess you’ll just have to grace us with your presence at the bash😀

        Liked by 1 person

  15. It’s funny, I have three voices. Spoken Voice (Geordie dialect, talks faster than Blur from Transformers), Academic Voice, and Blogging Voice. For a really long time, I kept confusing the last two and wondered why no one read my posts. Then I started writing the way that I talk and I started getting comments. I don’t stress about how I identify myself (other than evil genius, obv) but I figure voice is a sum total of everything. Personal image, blog posts, tweets, photos, everything. It’s the sum total of you online, and that’s not necessarily the you offline. But that’s not a bad thing. You can’t be all things to all people!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Actually Icy, that is a bloody good point. Because I don’t use the academic voice I did for uni essays. I think my non fiction blog posts are probably pretty close to my non fiction book BUT that is a totally different voice to fiction. Thanks for telling me because now I don’t feel insane! lol.

      Hahahaha evil genius, you’re hilarious. Are you coming to the bash? Hope so.😀


  16. Hmmm… Don’t recall the arse sniffing, but there was a lot going on outside the British Library, so I may have missed that.

    As for finding yourself, still struggle with that a little bit, though I try to relax more when I’m writing and let the humour come through even when I’m dealing with dark stuff. For us Brits, it’s how we deal with a lot of things anyway. If I had a laugh at my dad’s funeral, it’s clearly my natural way of doing things.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Seriously. That’s way out your price range. We need a Bash mascot, think he said something about using them for design purposes. You do know you consented to having your photo used in all materials going forward…. something about a signature on the truth app…

        Liked by 2 people

  17. Who are you? Aren’t you Sacha? LOL, such an awesome post. Here’s my two cents: We can either create a persona for ourselves who we want to be, or just be ourselves. In writing nonfiction, I think it’s easier to acquire our voice, because it’s our own personality that comes through when telling a story.
    I think for fiction it may be a tad more difficult. In fiction the story is coming from a character. The author has to develop that character to inherit a voice. It gets more tricky when you write more books because the ‘style’ of the author’s writing becomes part of the voice and that has to be developed. For example: You love reading a certain fiction author’s work so you buy all their books, why? Because you know their writing style, you enjoy the way they have their own unique style of telling a story. Voila, that is voice.
    Do I make sense?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. SOZ for taking so long to reply. Haha you know what I mean, as in Sacha isn’t my birth name. But actually when I think about it I am probably more Sacha than ‘N’. When I started blogging I did so under a different name so I COULD be me! Actually that makes SO much sense, I hadn’t really considered the fact that the characters voice has to come through and therefore we hear their voice. But you’re right, there is definitely something to do with the tone and style of an author that is consistent over time. One pops into my mind straight away I read dozens of their books in a series. Thanks for making me think🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Oh, man, I love who you are before you even figured it out: “I am the curious girl clinging to her meliorist nature who, despite her caustic wit and twisted outlook, will never lose hope. Yeah. That’s who I am.”

    Voice matters because it is all about exploring (evolving and even re-writing) who we are. Billions of us can write non-fiction but only you can write it as you, and me as me. Throughout the BinderCon this past weekend, many famous and successful writers said, “Have a life.” Have a life and you have a voice. In Montana I got to hang out with a famous NY Times best-selling author and she said it’s all about answering why do you write.

    So who am I? I’m a buckaroo story-teller who curiously searches cemeteries and dusty old tales to find truth in stories, a hope-lifter who encourages others to seek what they find meaningful, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww what a lovely thing to say Charli.

      I like that you said ‘re-writing’ who we are. I think that’s so true. Our skin and all our body cells renew every 7 years so we simply can’t be the same person.

      I think that is a really important reminder. I can get caught up spending too much time writing and not enough living. And its true too.

      Lol I didn’t know you searched cemeteries!!!! That’s hilarious and brilliant. I love that you do that. ❤


  19. A great post, Sacha, but then your posts usually are and, believe me, your voice comes through loud and clear.

    I feel as though I have a better handle on my writing voice than I used to, simply because I’m writing more often and so I have to exercise it every day. Even though the characters that come to me have different voices of their own, I’m noticing ways that I write, phrases I return to, things that I focus on when setting a scene, and I think that’s where my own voice comes into play. Your model of writer identity acceptance certainly rang true to me – I think I’m at five, heading into six🙂

    Thanks for making me think – there are days when I find being a writer more difficult than others, but reading this has reminded me of the reason why I write. There are voices to be heard, including my own.🙂


    1. Thanks Helen, sorry for the slow reply, really behind with comments at the moment – having to do them on my lunch break! lol.

      I think that’s a really good point – although I am sure it is like riding a bicycle – if we stop exercising it we do rust up.

      Yeah I agree on that too – I have to catch myself to make sure I’m not actually just writing phrases I always write! It’s even down to word order and flow/structure of sentences, we all have our own ways of creating stories and even things as minute as that affect our voice.

      Ah cool, glad you found the model interesting – I think it’s probably true. I think I am somewhere way down at tolerance! lol.

      And that is so true! your voice does need to be heard. Especially the silvery black one! :p

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Fabulous read! I too have struggled for years in finding my ‘writers voice.’ I think partly because I want my own work to be on a par with those I aspire to be as good as. The literary greats. But constant self criticism and comparison does nothing for ones confidence. I even went as far as giving up for a good while. But like any true writer I couldn’t not create. So I thought stuff it. Who cares if what I write is verging on verbal diarrhoea!? If I enjoy it then I’m going to keep writing. And so weirdly I ended up sort of finding my own voice. It isn’t going to win the Pulitzer or Nobel Prize award… But it rings true as me. I think I honestly write like I speak.
    In terms of what fuels me? I’m constantly looking for the good in everything, in how I can be a better person. I look for inspiration everywhere and in turn I want to leave something behind that will hopefully inspire many for years to come. I strive to ensure every individual who crosses my path each day leaves feeling somehow more content or uplifted, their faith in humanity restored if only for a moment. Corny perhaps. But that’s me to the core I guess. Hell I even loved the Spice Girls! :))) Go figure! Xxxx


    1. Thank you so much . I completely agree – I want to be as good as those I read too. But the trouble is, I don’t think I will EVER feel like I am, even if I managed to sell a whole bunch of books. I am glad you came back to writing, I have thought about quitting so many times, but I just can’t. Maybe there will come a time when I quit for a bit, but thats the key factor…. it would only be for a bit!!

      That’s such a cool fuel. I think that looking for the good in everyone is a beautiful catalyst for writing.🙂


  21. I am in Love with the word Meliorist, learned it from you.
    This is without a doubt the best post I’ve read today. I’ve been racking my brain trying to figure out this Voice mumbo that everyone has been going on about.
    Your blog is a, to use your term, “Shitplosion” of awesomeness & depth. That last part killed me with laughter, relating to every syllable. I don’t know how you do it but keep doing it because I haven’t seen a blogger like you in ages. You most assuredly headed to Legend….wait for it….Dary status.


    1. Hehe it is an awesome word!😀

      And thank you so much for such a lovely comment. It has made my week. So many lols, I love that my site is a shitsplosion of awesome. That is like the best thing anyone could ever say.😀

      Have a shitsplosion of love from me to you! :p❤

      Liked by 1 person

  22. Excellent article, it really hits home for me. I am still in initial stages of finding my writers voice (3) and have just begun writing, although for years I have wanted to write. I guess as you say the voice was there providing the ideas and words, I was just too confused and a little scared to take it further as my interests vary to the extreme, swaying from wanting to write nonfiction to blogging about life, books, politics and my opinions on the world in general to writing about family history. This along with fear of damaging my professional reputation at the day job put me off beginning to write publically on any subject for fear of the crossed identity but I the call to write only grows and I am now realising it is ok to write about a variety of things, it’s who I am and to embrace this I took the initial steps to set up a family history blog on word press and hey presto the discover button magically popped this article up, so far all is good.


    1. So glad you liked the post😀 and I am so so glad that the call to write was more powerful than the fear of what might happen at work. I actually write under a pen name. Sacha Black isnt my real name, although now, lots of people know me as that name and I use it almost as much as my real name. But you’re right, the call to write is extremely powerful. Embrace it, and share whatever comes to you. Enjoy the journey, its a beautiful thing x


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