Your Voice: Work It, Raise It, Change It
We often regard the author’s voice as having an inherent, unchangeable quality. Many writers have invoked the analogy comparing one’s voice to a fingerprint. But one person's “fingerprint” is another person’s rut, and no author should feel trapped in his or her voice.
Sandra Beasley is the author of Count the Waves; I Was the Jukebox, winner of the Barnard Women Poets Prize; and Theories of Falling, winner of the New Issues Poetry Prize. She is also the author of Don’t Kill the Birthday Girl: Tales from an Allergic Life, a memoir and cultural history of food allergy. Honors include a Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts; the Center for Book Arts Chapbook Prize; distinguished writer residencies at Cornell College, Lenoir-Rhyne University, and the University of Mississippi; two DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities Artist Fellowships; and the Maureen Egen Exchange Award from Poets & Writers. Her prose has appeared in such venues as the New York Times, The Washington Post and The Oxford American. She lives in Washington, D.C., and teaches as part of the University of Tampa’s low-residency MFA program.