I’ve been hearing a lot about voice lately. And, no, I’m not taking singing lessons.
One e-group I’m on shared a link designed to tell the user who they write like. Just submit some text and you have it. I must be fairly eclectic. I tried it four times with different sections of Ghost Mountain and got four different answers: Margaret Atwood, H.P. Lovecraft, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Dan Brown. Not sure what that says about my own voice. I’ve opted to take it as a positive sign that I combine the best of all of them.
Around my house, however, my voice has been sounding a bit like Robin Williams’ version of Adrian Cronauer, the military disc jokey who inspired the movie Good Morning, Vietnam. Our air conditioning is on the fritz and I’ve been quoting “It’s hot! Damn hot! Real hot!” As it happens, Mr. Cronauer and I have something else in common — I graduated from the same Department of Defense training school he did… and with similar unremarkable scores if the rumors are correct.
Another voice has found its way out of my mouth lately, and it’s one that is hard to own up to. My daughter is getting ready for her senior year of high school and I’ve found myself being possessed by the voices of my own parents. “How are those college applications coming?” “Have you been looking for scholarships?” “What do you expect to do with that major?” “You know, if you don’t keep your grades up . . .” I’m trying to avoid those voices, but they do sneak out when I’m least expecting it.
Seven. That’s seven voices—besides my own— running through my head at any given moment. Legally insane criminals often say the voice in their head made them commit their heinous acts. St. Joan of Arc claimed she heard three voices. I wonder what it means to have seven.
Maybe it just means I’m a writer. . .
Nichole Bennett is the author of Ghost Mountain, available on Amazon.com or secondwindpublishing.com