The Ever Elusive Voice

Lindi Peterson is an author of contemporary Christian romance
novels focusing on the amazing love of Jesus Christ and how His love influences
our ability to love one another. She lives north of Atlanta, Georgia, with her
hubby. They are empty nesters as far as children go, but they do support, feed,
and care for a dog, 2 cats and 2 birds (who are at often times way louder than
the kids used to be). She’d wanted to be a writer ever since she can remember.
So, about 12 years ago, she started writing novels. Writing for publication is an
amazing, crazy journey, but she wouldn’t trade it in at all!
The Ever Elusive Voice
Are you a new writer?
If not, do you remember being a new writer? Do you remember hearing words that
you knew what they meant, but the way people talked about these words indicated
there was more to the picture than you knew about.
I remember the words
that eventually left me befuddled.
Fresh.
Sparkle.
Voice.
Looking at those words
we all know what they mean. But what they mean in the writing world can wreck a
novelist and result in a lot of rewriting and some sleepless nights.
And maybe even some
rejection letters.
“We’re looking for a
story that’s fresh!”
“Your characters don’t
sparkle.”
“The voice isn’t
distinctive.”
Yeah—have you heard
this before? If not in the form of a rejection, how about from a critique
partner? Or what about in a workshop? Well, I have good news and bad news. Bad
news-two of these words we aren’t talking about today. Really, there’s not
enough blog space!
Seriously though, each
of these words has an extremely important role in your novel, but, (good news)
today we are going to focus on one.
Voice.
Because I think having
a distinctive voice is one of the most important aspects of this business. When
your voice shines, you can tell your story. You can impart to readers the way
you ‘feel’ about the story—because to me, voice is about feeling.
Think of it this way.
How do you converse? Pay attention to conversations around you. Do you hear
people’s beats? Do you notice pauses? Awkward ones? They are all a part of real
conversation.  Take notice of the
way you talk. The emphasis you put on certain words.
I have a little
exercise on voice finding. I do this a lot and I find it really helps me pull
from all sorts of places inside where all those feelings are just fighting to
come out and grab your reader. I do this especially if I have a scene that’s
not quite coming together. I write it in first person. Then I write it in third
person. It’s amazing the way each scene pulls out different aspects of what is
going on. Then I mesh the two together. It’s kind of like bringing in the best
of both worlds. And this is true for all the scenes in your novel. Dialogue and
description.
Voice isn’t just about
dialogue. No, it’s the way the novel flows. It’s the way the beats fall. It’s
the composition of the way the novel is put together. It all really comes back
to voice.
I find that rough
drafts are the best expression of voice. Of course, there’s usually rewrites,
but hopefully rewriting doesn’t pull the ‘you’ out of your novel. Because it’s
that gut writing that comes from deep within that’s going to make your novel
different from everyone else’s.
Drat—voice can be hard
to explain. I hope I’ve shed a little light into the topic of the ever elusive
voice. I’d be happy to answer/ask questions and discuss this topic.
A side note: An author
whose voice I love is Alice J. Wisler. I love picking up an Alice J. Wisler
novel. I know what I’m getting when I read Wisler. Amazing voice. Check her out
if you haven’t and you’ll see what I tried to explain in this blog post. 
Left, is a photo of
what I stare at as a write. I have 2 bulletin boards. This is a picture of one
of them. I love starting at things that remind me of my current WIP. 
Oh, and there’s
a picture of one of my cats, too. My hubby and I have 2 cats, 1 dog and 2
birds. Even though we are empty nesters, we have a loud house!
Thanks for having me
here today!  Novel Rocket rocks!

Her Best Catch

Allison Doll’s mother is rebelliously turning fifty, her two
best friends have started dating and a gorgeous injured relief pitcher named
Ashton Boyd has joined her Sunday school class, rocking her world into
confusion, heartache and temptation, places she hasn’t visited in a long time,
much less all at once.

But with the help of family, old friends she really hasn’t lost, a new friend
she really can count on, and God, she begins to find out whether she’ll always
be a girl waiting for life to happen or a woman who’s ready to commit to her
best catch.

And that’s not all! Be watching for Summer Song.  Here’s a tease … 

Pop-Princess Summer Sinclair doesn’t know what to do now that she’s cleaned-up and sober. She knows God’s been nudging her, but since God is unfamiliar territory she feels scared and alone. Everything changes when she meets Levi Preston, a Christian musician who tries everything he can to show Summer what true love really is. But when Summer’s life starts replaying Levi’s past, his faith is tested. Will visions of their past prevent Summer and Levi from living the life God has for them? Or will true love triumph giving Summer and Levi their own Summer Song.