Kayla Hicks - Author Kayla Hicks - Author

Determining Your Writing Style

4 min read

Sometimes this is one of the toughest stepping stones in an author’s career

Just like the way you talk or the mannerisms you show when you speak to others, writers do various things when they write that set them apart from other writers.

Every writer is influenced by the books they read and the people they encounter. Every writer is going to share their stories in only one way they can tell them.

If you aren’t sure what your writing style is, read over previous things you have written and try to figure out what sets you apart from other writers you have read.

Do you infuse more humor into your writing? Do you use bigger words to be more descriptive to your audience? Do you have a quirky narrative voice?

Considering what your style is going to help you drive your stories toward the right audience and give your stories more focus.

Every writer has:

A Voice

This is the personality of the writer that they take when they are writing the story.

You may come across authors who infuse more humor or sarcasm into their writing. Or you may come across authors who speak more seriously and in more direct sentencing to the audience.

A Tone

This is the personality that the writing conveys to the reader. This is determined by word choices, grammar choices, and more.

Writers can give the story an overall more jovial tone or a more somber tone depending on a few components.

  • Genre

  • Theme

  • Circumstances

Even though the personality of the writer is a huge considerable factor in how the book will turn out, there are also four styles that a writer’s style can fall into.

  1. Expository: When the writer is teaching or explaining something to the reader. This form of writing comes to readers in technical books, news articles, and business articles.

  2. Descriptive: When the writer uses descriptive writing to explain a person, place, or thing. Which then allows the readers to form a picture of the said thing in their minds. This comes to readers most commonly in poetry works.

  3. Narrative: When the writer takes on a narrative role in telling a story to the reader which comes in the form of novels and short stories. They may explain who the characters are, the settings, and the plot as well.

  4. Persuasive: When writers explain their opinion and try to influence the reader to agree with their opinion. Readers typically see this style in speeches, advertising, and editorials.

Each genre also brings readers with expectations from its authors.

Depending on the genre, this can challenge the writer’s writing style in terms of what the audience expects. Mainly because when an audience reads in a particular genre, they become accustomed to certain writing styles that are found within this selection of writers.

For example, a romance reader may be looking for a writing style that builds up the rise of the story so that the climax feels well-earned. This type of writer may need to do well with descriptive writing to provide the reader with enough information to feel the nerves of a first date or the heartbreak that happens when the main character loses the love of his life.

Each genre ultimately has set expectations that your writing style will fit into, and that you will work to make your own.

When considering how to make your writing style the best that it can be, consider the following:

  • If you use bigger words to provide the reader with more concise descriptions, be sure that they aren’t too big, or you could lose your audience

  • Get rid of filler words

  • Don’t let your work be overly wordy

And know that discovering your writing style isn’t always instant, it can take time.