Tuesday, November 06, 2001

First matter of business--Angela resist being sassy to that lameo boss. I say that because that is what he wants, more excuses to harrass and control. Not to say you should smile and make nice-nice--just don't stoop. This from an expert at working for dysfunctional people.

Now, for a 180-degree turn, something about Andrew's post--and the notion of "variety of voice"--has me squirming. And so I blog. Here's my perspective on Andrew's notion that "stories are told within contexts, with a certain voice, all with a particular audience in mind." Who's voice? Andrew poses this question, wondering if "human voice" isn't too generic.

In part--yes, I think you're right, and I have to admit, I for one hadn't been giving much thought to the notion of variety of voice. But I think that's because I'm already a resident expert on variety of voice. Every day that is what I do. Although some call it "spin," it's essentially doning a specific persona and communicating thusly. Tone, tennor, light or heavy, polite or common---these impressions form what I produce in the name of client deliverables.

The voice I'm more interested in--I guess it's because I tell yarns all day in other people's voices--is GENUINE voice. AKA the voice we each have, deep in our gut, that if we strip away everything else, still resonates.

This is the voice that speaks when you are defending what you love. When you are threatened. When you love. When you feel pain. In other words, voice of passion.

Genuine voice is what businesses think they can do without. But it no longer matters what business thinks. The Net is powering genuine voice--embracing genuine voice as it repels contrived voice. The net is a home for genuine voice, specifically because (in my humble opinion), the net removes the control factor (and fear, which follows closely) associated with genuine voices, which often express uncomfortable (for business) thoughts and ideas.

You are right though--the cultural context of voice can't be overlooked. Still, when you get to the nitty gritty, you too, Andrew Arnold, have genuine voice, deep in your gut, and it's not polite, and it's not contrived. Consider the energy behind that voice, and it's source. Picture yourself defending your family, being jilted at the alter, watching your child come into the world. At that moment, all propriety and social mores ripped away, genuine voice--your voice--resonates. That is when the world will hear you. That is what's worth listening to.

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