On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Friday, December 23, 2005


Image hosted by Photobucket.comImage hosted by Photobucket.comI woke to a dog barking. I don't think it's the big dog across the street as the yips were too high and I can see this BIG dog walking in its yard from my bedroom window, because it's so large. The barking ended quite quickly, only to be replaced by my cat Diva's insistent, shrill, "Feed me!" yowls. Which I pretty much ignored as I dressed.

I have new Dearfoam slippers that keep my feet warm as long as I don't put them on after my feet are chilled. Something poked me as I put on my paint-splattered, no-waist-string scruff pants. I finally figured out it was one of those rubber coated paperclips that was in my pocket and melted in the dryer to leave wire and plastic. Fortunately, since it was my scruff pants, the white residue of the plastic blends right in.

Then I paid attention to Diva and she increased the volume of her yowls. I tilted my head to hear the big fountain. There is an underlying SPURT-SPURT-SPURT in the consistent flow, which means it's getting low.

So I listened to sounds this morning and got to thinking about aural people (like the culture I've made in Lladrana, and Trif Clover who turned out to be, of all things, a musician). And how aural people say "I hear you," instead of "I can see that."

And I thought about how I always use the word rhythm in my work and I think of the rhythm of words most particularly as Voice. Voice is your style, your phrasing, the way you use words, stringing which syllables together, which is unique to you and no one else.

We talked about Voice last critique group (Sat). We have a new member who is, unlike the rest of us, in her first year of serious writing. A very unique fantasy voice, but still learning technique. Another member who doesn't come often (for reasons we all know but a long story re: an editor, a requested book and many rewrites) was afraid to crititque the first's work because it might hurt her excellent Voice. Well, the pacing was a little slow (and my stuff lacked Action), but the rest of us believed that mastering technique will only accentuate her true voice (or that was the gist of it).

Last night before I went to bed, I listened to an audio tape of Jayne Ann Krentz's Smoke and Mirrors. She's one of my favorite author's and I like that tape the best because it's done by a couple. There isn't often a male voice in my house. The cats run from such tones.

Jayne Ann Krentz's style is VERY different than Nora Roberts', especially when she's writing as J.D. Robb, and the rhythm of Nora's style was in my mind all day yesterday and the day before as I reread three of the In Death books (the ones I found easily).

So I thought about rhythm and words and Voice and listened and-- is that the tea kettle? Yep. Better finish this up.

May your own voice be strong and true today.


Blogger moonhart said...

Well, my contest results, crit partners and average man on the street readers seem to agree that "Voice" is not a problem for me. I don't even know how or where I got it. So...lucky me.

Of course, I have lotsa other stuff to work on.



10:38 AM  
Anonymous Danica said...

Interesting thoughts on voice... pretty teapot too. :)

4:53 PM  
Blogger Robin D Owens said...

Excellent, Moon. I know I had to work on Voice. Thanks, Danica. I bought it...

5:04 PM  

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