Monday, February 4, 2013

Voice, Style, and Technique

Robin D. Owens has been writing longer than she cares to recall. Her fantasy/futuristic romances found a home at Berkley with the issuance of HeartMate in 2001. (She credits the telepathic cat with attitude in selling that book.) Many books in the series later, Heart Secret was released in 2012. Her Luna Books series includes shape-shifting fairies and average American women summoned into another world to fight monstrous evil. The first, Guardian of Honor, came out in February 2005 and again, books later, Enchanted Ever After was released in 2012. Winner of (amongst many awards) the RITA, RMFW’s Writer of the Year, and a past President of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, Robin’s novella, Feral Magic, led Robin to writing this blog she shares with us today. ~ Janet Fogg

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Style can change, technique can be taught, and voice -- well, voice can be refined, but, truly, voice is what people read a certain writer for.

Voice is the primary thing that makes one writer different than another, one storyteller different than the next. Voice is unique (and how wonderful is THAT!) and crucial.

I must admit I was very upset when I saw the 1 star review of Feral Magic on Amazon. Now, I get one stars and two stars most every book (if you think I'm going to look to check these facts, you are wrong). But what was bad for me about the review on Feral Magic was that it was a new project I really wanted to take off, and the one star came when there were only two reviews.

I DID read it, how could I not? And what it came down to is that the reviewer did not like my voice, style or technique.

There is nothing I can do to recover from that. There is no way I can convince her that she'd like another book of mine. She will probably never like my work.

THAT IS HER PREROGATIVE. WE ARE ALL UNIQUE AND LIKE WHAT WE LIKE, AND SHOULD READ WHAT WE WANT TO READ.

I did what I rarely do, asked some critique buddies that if they liked the work and thought it merited more stars, to post. One of them came through and I was greatly relieved.

Each one of my books will be judged by reviewers. Since I put my work out there, that is what I must expect and accept. My writing will be judged, my voice and technique. Every writer who is published must accept that. Sometimes it won't feel fair. Tough.

But I'm not going to stop writing stories I love and believe in, and I will always do, as I have always done: Write the best book I can with the knowledge and resources I have. I am a writer.

Merry meet and merry part and merry meet again.

Robin

You can learn more about Robin D. Owens and her books at her website and on her blog.

6 comments:

Julie Luek said...

I think voice and style are key in writing and tricky to refine. After all, it requires a little vulnerability on the part of the writer. Glad you are sticking to your stories with conviction.

Karen Duvall said...

This is why I never read reviews of my books. I applaud you for thinking on the positive side. Good luck with your new novella! :)

Patricia Stoltey said...

We all need to have this attitude toward reviews to keep from drowning our sorrows in chocolate. :D

FantasyAuthor RobinDOwens said...

Thanks, Ladies...sorry for the lateness of the comments but I am in TX and grabbing time when I can get it!

j.a. kazimer said...

Thank you Janet and Robin for the reminder. This was what I needed. I can't change my voice or my style, and I can't make everyone like me, even when I pay good money to do so. Great post.

FantasyAuthor RobinDOwens said...

Thanks, Julie!