It’s that time of the week – Tuesday Discussion.
From those who are new, each week I post a topic (relevant to my WIP) and try to unravel the mysteries and perspectives of it. Last weeks post was Writing Within Genres and this week is:
Character Voice Between Multiple POVs.
Character Voice is a crucial element of writing dialogue. In stage, film and TV we have the sound of individual characters’ voices and their identifying features to tell characters apart. In writing, dialogue and body action needs to convey these differentiating elements with words.
When we talk about characters’ ‘voices’, we don’t just mean the sound of a voice. It’s also the character – the personality – that shines through their speech. Details such as:
- Favourite subjects (for example, a Charles Dickens character might humble-brag a lot about how poor they were growing up to show others they’re a self-made man)
- Striking vocal features (a high/low/soft/loud voice, speaking fast, speaking slow, slurred speech)
- Vocabulary (does a character speak mostly in elegant, complex phrases, or is their speech rough around the edges?)
- Accent – this is something that’s easy to overdo.
- Repeative Actions – if the character is nervous he/she might have an object to stimulate sensory needs.
The biggest struggle I’ve endured in my writing, is seperating the voices between the multiple POVs. I created a list of details for each character, so I when I am editing I refer to and not mix up the personalities.
For example: One of my characters struggle with anxiety and squeezes his hand to self-regulate. I can’t have another character use that technique otherwise the two characters would overlap and confuse the reader.
How do you deal with the multiple POVs and voice?
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