Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Behind the Books: Nonfiction Voice, Part 3

For the last couple of weeks, I’ve been blogging about my most recent insights into the role of voice in nonfiction writing. Today I’m going to list some common characteristics I’ve noticed in books with strong, distinctive voices.
Books with a lively voice often include:
  • Second-person point of view
  • Figurative language, including alliteration/assonance, similes and metaphors, onomatopoeia
  • Sensory details
  • Strong, surprising verbs
  • Irresistible facts
Books with a lyrical voice often include:
  • Third-person point of view
  • Figurative language, including alliteration/assonance, opposition, similes and metaphors
  • Repetition
  • Internal rhyme with soft sounds
  • Strong, surprising verbs


  1. This has been a most informative Wednesday series... thank you so much for sharing your insight.

  2. Thanks, Sue. A few more weeks still to go.

  3. Thank you, Melissa...I need to go back and catch up on the posts in this series that I've missed. These lists will be so helpful as I revise my fact, I plan to print them out and keep them close. ;)

  4. Thanks for your kind words, Vivian. So glad you found this post useful.

  5. Love your use of words: Lively and Lyrical! Those are fun words to describe nonfiction voice!

    This has been a great series and has added depth to my understanding of your science paired texts . . .Love the K-2 book and looking forward to 3-5 , , , soon?

  6. Thanks, Fran. It's so much fun to share our love of nonfiction with one another.