One of the biggest challenges in writing is developing your voice, or the manner in which your writing speaks to your audience. Academic writing, professional writing, and personal writing, such as blogging, all require different voices, or tones, due to the context in which you are writing.
One way in which your tone will change is the level of formality. Academic and professional writing are necessarily more formal than blogging or commenting on someone’s Facebook page. If you write using acronyms such as LOL or OMG in a business analysis that will be read by your company’s CEO, you are doing it wrong!
Find Your Voice: Writing Honestly…
The nature of writing a custom research paper or business report versus, for example, an essay on your summer vacation necessarily changes the tone of your writing. Citing academic journals or industry statistics creates a more formal tone, or it should, and writing about your personal experiences and emotions provides a context that allows you to express yourself more freely and informally.
Of course, there are occasions to incorporate personal opinions into formal writing; lab report often incorporate suggestions that are based upon the writer’s experience and knowledge in tandem with metrics of the business or market. These opinions are much more constrained, however, and should not be confused with expressing one’s fondness for a particular restaurant at the seaside!
Writing personally, however, allows the writer to communicate to their audience that which is important to the writer. Writing of this nature gives one the opportunity to express yourself and to share the things in life that are important to you with others.
Changing tones can be subtle, writing in the first person, substituting “one” for “you”, as I have done in the two preceding paragraphs, gives a more formal tone and makes the writer seem more disconnected from the subject; it is an expression of objective fact rather than opinion.
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Writing a custom, or unique, essay that is intended to illustrate your feelings is accomplished most effectively when you write honestly about your reflections on life and those in it. Trying to shape your writing to appeal to an audience in contrast with your own standing on a particular issue is not effective, because you are not being honest.
This is not to say that everyone will agree with everything that you write. Persuasive essays, for example, are designed to convince those who hold an opposite opinion that you are right and they are wrong, and give reasons why. My point is that you will be more effective in doing so if you write about something that you believe in, and are an advocate for a position or cause that you believe in.
Writing academically or professionally does not always afford the luxury of writing about something that you believe in passionately. Writing for yourself should always be a simple and honest expression of how YOU feel, not how you think others WANT you to feel. Learning to find your writing voice is a way to learn more about yourself, and to share yourself with others.