Is the voice of your blog and book the same?
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I'm working on a book proposal for my blog and I have over 75 pages of book worthy blog material but now I'm thinking that the voice of the blog should be different from the book. 


Anyone else struggling to find the voice and write the first chapter? I'm stuck on both--unless I write two different books on the same subject. 


Ideas? Advice? 



  • My blog and books are on a continuum, developing together. At, I have been blogging for about 3 years. Sometimes I blog every day. I relate back ideas from my books in my blogs and try to generate conversation about my novels and nonfiction books with the visitors that stop by. I have been stuck with elements of both the fiction and nonfiction and use the blog, almost as a daily diary, to figure those difficult passages out. My voice in nonfiction is the consistent with the one used on the blog. It differs in fiction because of the voice of the characters.

  •  Soe very helpful stuff here! I've been writing for20 years, but only blogging for 3 months. Because I think of the blog as the 'not writing novel me' it is more personal and daft than the books - tho' some may disagree. Clearly you may have to tidy up your blog a bit - take out some very personal stuff, add some more generall interest bits. Or you could assume a persona and do the blog in 'her' voice. Then keep the blog as a separate outlet, as in: the story of ''Liza Kirr' who writes a blog and is struggling to get it published - with excerpts.

     Send me your blog site, anyway, I'll take a look. I'm at

    Good luck with your project, whatever you decide. Main thin is, ENJOY!!!!! or what's the point? :  ) carol the Brit

  • In answer to your question above about finding one's voice and writing the first chapter:  It took me quite a while to really settle into my own voice when I was blogging. But it finally happened. I had to get rid of any fear I had about exposing myself and laying it all on the line.

    When I started writing my memoir, I seemed to revert back to as more stilted style, but soon realized I had to relax with it and let it flow, like my blog posts, without monitoring it as I went.

    After doing a rough draft, I went back to the beginning and, with the help of some Alpha and Beta readers, started to re-write. I re-wrote the first chapter several times and still wasn't happy with it. I finally realized my voice wasn't consistent thoughout. When I became aware of that, I did a major overhaul and ended up with something I loved.

    It's a long, hard process. I haven't published this chapter as a excerpt as yet, but if anyone is interested, I can do it here. It's quite short (10 pages).


  • This is such an important question we must absolutely ask ourselves, especially if we are writing memoir. My memoir grew directly out of blog posts I had been making for almost two years. The link I putting here today is to a post of a section I wanted to include in my memoir, but realized the voice was not the same as the rest of the book. In fact, my voice is not really here. The piece is more like an essay. So I am keeping it as such. But it is something I am very passionate about, so if I can find a way to include some of it, I will:
  • I love this question, Lisa. I do not have time to post an answer today, but I have grappled with this question for a long time and come up with several conclusions. I'll be back.

  • Thanks Jeannette. I think you're right and I've been struggling with that for quite some time.
  • You know, I think whatever inspiration got you to write the blog should be the same seed you use to grow your book.

    There's a reason you wanted to tell that story and it lies in the beginning.


  • I just read "The Hip Girls Guide to Homemaking". It's definitely a how-to title and her style does not deviate far from her blog style of writing. For a memoir, however, I could see how this would need to change a bit in a book, though you never know. I guess it depends on how far you want to get into the topic and how deeply you've written about your life on your blog so far.
  • Yes, this makes a lot of sense.


    Yesterday, I was disturbed by something and was creating a post as objectively as I could but after writing it, I felt better and I didn't post it. I know it's bad but I guess I was feeling a bit  wicked.


    What you stated does make a lot of sense. I'm going to look up the graphic novel you mentioned. Thank you.

  • The graphic novel sounds wonderful. Have you read Maus? It's a graphic novel about the Holocaust. It's a biography of the author's father.


    You just asked the winning question, "How do you write objectively about real life people who you may not have particularly cared for?"


    I recently heard Patti Smith and Dave Eggers talk about this. Patti answered that you have to write about those people holistically--including the GOOD with the bad. There are redeeming qualities in most people, as well as the awful sides of them. Dave answered that you have to be aware of a books permanence. He wrote about his friends using real telephone numbers (of one friend) and didn't realize the amount of phone calls that person would get for years to come. Books are so permanent and those people have to live with what WE choose to write them as.


    There's a great interview on She Writes Radio by Kathryn Harrison and another woman about writing about real characters. I'll find the link and post it. Kathryn answers this well, since her story dealt with her father who manipulated her into having sex with him at age 20. One thing Kathryn accepts is her part in the incestuous relationship and she does this by writing honestly about herself and her part in it.


    I was so inspired after that interview.


    I'm writing about cult leaders, but they're well-known pastors and they're fathers of children I used to nanny. I want to be very careful not to demonize them (as they did me) and to portray their good sides along with the bad sides. Even though what they're doing is wrong, the situation wasn't absolutely awful every day. It takes a personal effort to work through the pain of the painful moments in order to see the good, though. That's why I think memoir writing is so emotionally taxing.


    Hope that helps.