Friday, August 5, 2011

The human voice is the organ of the soul. -H.W. Longfellow

Guest Post by Brenda Sills from The Startled Spyglass

There’s something about writing that I feel very strongly about.
Oh! You want to know what it is? Sure, sure, here you go—

Hold onto your Voice with all your strength.

Hold tight with the same grip you’d use to hang onto someone’s hand who just fell over a 700 foot cliff and you’ve got ‘em by one hand and you’re gonna pull ‘em up and save their life!

Don’t ever let go of who you are as a writer.

Figure out how to recognize the line of when to use critiques (critical by the way) and when to hold tight to your voice. The way you write makes you, you.

It’ll be tough, really tough because people will bombard you with endless ways to alter your voice. I’ve seen it happen to friends, acquaintances, people I didn’t even know. I caught wind of what they considered changing because of a critique, and I panicked for them. The same things happened to me.

Please believe me, I value every critique I get and the effort each person puts into it—it means a lot. But I won’t let go of my voice. That’s me.

I’m unique and you’re unique.

Hold on tight. Never let go. Enjoy the vision of who you are as a writer.

Brenda Sills in an aspiring author, wife, mother, and all around good friend. Find her at The Startled Spyglass and/or follow her on Twitter


  1. I whole-heartedly agree! Critiques, for me, are welcome things to consider. But like picking through a fresh bag of pinto beans, critical comments have to be sifted through, and if there's a stone in there....throw it out!

  2. This is great Brenda! What a great way to measure whether a critique is helpful or not. I love this :)

  3. Agree! And I love your voice, Brenda! :) I also LOVE the quote at the beginning of the post.

  4. Sweet inspiration! Thank you and so true. Too often we are tempted to change "our voice" to please someone else, or get published, but I think it's wrong. The right person will come out and publish what we've created and it will truly be OURS if we keep it real and keep our voice! Love this post! :)

  5. Definitely hang on to your voice. Critiques are nice, but not carved in stone. Go with your gut, you'll know if it feels right or not. Nice post!

  6. Critiques are opinions. I agree if many critiques come back saying the same thing, you should consider a change. But if the voice is true and comes naturally, you can really see that in a person's work. Nothing's worse than a forced voice.

  7. Thanks all you amazingly wonderful people! Your comments are so fantastic and appreciated. It's been so much fun to spend a week with you on Shelly's Splendiferous Spiel Spot (Blog for traditionalists)

    Thanks you Fantastico Shelly, you! This has been an experience of a blog-lifetime!


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