You’ve probably noticed that practically every advice about starting and running your own blog involves this one apparently simple tip: find your blog writing voice. When people give you this advice, they usually mean that you have to have a writing style that best reflects your personality. The principle behind this is genuine expression – the more “natural” your writing style is to you, the better your chance of attracting an audience.
Sounds easy, doesn’t it? But the truth is that a lot of people have trouble with this bit. It’s difficult to “be yourself” online, especially if you’ve never written a personal diary before. Further complicating this is the idea that the tone and style of your blog writing should be cohesive and consistent throughout. So not only do you need to develop a writing style that’s honest and authentic, you also need to ensure that you can sustain that writing style over several posts in order to establish a cohesive identity that people identify with.
How, exactly, do you reconcile “writing naturally” with “writing consistently”? One way to do that is to listen to how your brain talks. And you can do that by trying the following exercises.
Write Morning Pages
Julia Cameron, author of the book “The Artist’s Way”, uses a creativity tool she dubbed “Morning Pages” to get in touch with one’s personal thoughts and feelings for the day. More often than not, the point of this strategy – which involves writing down three pages of anything and everything that comes to mind first thing in the morning – is to inspire creative productivity for that day.
But there is another benefit to doing this freestyle stream of consciousness task: it gives you a better idea of how your brain naturally approaches ideas, word, and sentences. It’s how you express yourself before the rest of the world gets to you. By not thinking about what you’re writing, you can just focus on the act of articulating your thoughts as purely as possible. This, in turn, shows you your instinctive manner of communication and will give you a better idea of what blog writing style makes you feel most comfortable. With this, you can discover your blog writing voice.
Listen to your actual voice
More often than not, people compare their blog writing style to their manner of speaking. Some people go as far as describing their approach to writing blog posts as conversational, which many agree is a good way to engage a potential audience. As such, it’s probably a good idea to listen to the way you talk in order to understand the style of writing that will work for you.
If you’re particularly observant, you can study your speech patterns over a few conversations without going as far as recording them. But if you find that difficult, then there is nothing wrong with turning on the voice recorder on your phone while you’re talking to someone. Better yet, you can leave voicemail messages for your loved ones and colleagues and ask them for copies of them later on, so you can analyze your approach to communication, both in casual and professional contexts. Once you pick up on your own speaking patterns, you’ll have a more solid vision of what your blog writing voice is.
There are other ways to figure out what your blog voice is, but the important part is to really see which words, phrases, and themes you keep going back to. That way, sustaining a consistent blog writing voice won’t seem so overwhelming.