So, that last novel you enjoyed - what did the characters sound like?
No, really - sit back and think about them for a moment. I don’t mean what did the author say they sounded like, i.e. the descriptions of the person’s pitch, tone or some special quality that made them stand out. What did the characters sound like to you?
Did you go by what the author said, imagining every defined nuance? Or did you defy the written word, and throw on a voice you preferred, instead - maybe a brogue, or some New York swagger? Did the characters default to stereotypical voices according to their assigned roles, heritage, or attitudes? Or maybe your favorite actors unwittingly stepped in to narrate your tale?
Speaking of narrators (huh! Ok, that was a horrible pun and segue), maybe you prefer audio books to print. Do you mentally assign a new voice to each character as they’re read, or do you allow the voice actor to do the lion’s share of the imaginative work? Do you find it hard to find a unique voice for each character once you’ve listened to the actor’s choice of accent, dialect or inflection?
Writers - how often do the voices of your characters shift while you're writing a book (if at all)? Would you be able to pick your characters out of a crowd if all you had to go on was a phrase, a shout, or a random musing? Have you ever disliked a character’s voice (and what happened when you tried to change it)? And if someone other than you recorded the audio book version of your novel, how did you feel about the choices the actor made for your characters? Would you have made different choices, had you been behind the mic?
Natasha is the author of the Lost Souls Series - available at Carina Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes and Audible.
She tweets about her writing and related interests at http://twitter.com/natgreyangel, posts occasional videos at http://youtube.com/user/natashagreyangel, blogs at http://natashahoar.wordpress.com and last, but not least, can be found on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/AuthorNatashaHoar.