Welcome to the Historical Fiction Online forums: a friendly place to discuss, review and discover historical fiction.
If this is your first visit, please be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above.
You will have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.
To start viewing posts, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

Voices in novels?

Post Reply
User avatar
donroc
Compulsive Reader
Posts: 858
Joined: August 2008
Location: Winter Haven, Florida
Contact:

Voices in novels?

Post by donroc » Sun August 28th, 2011, 5:59 pm

We have a thread on eyes. Do any of you describe voices in your novels?

How many writers do you recall have used voices in novels to delineate a character positively or negatively.

From this male's POV in real life:

Women who speak through their noses and throats instead of from their diaphragms, which affects clarity of diction as well, annoy me the same as fingernails on a chalkboard.

All appeal dissipates with the sound of a cacaphonic voice as an example in: She walked in trim, a ravishing blue-eyed brunette until she spoke to her friend like the TV Nanny -- "Estah, c'mon heeah!" Fine for comedy, hell on the ears in real life.

They seldom speak softly too.

Is there a female equivalent of voices that turn off the ladies from a physically attractive male?
Image

Bodo the Apostate, a novel set during the reign of Louis the Pious and end of the Carolingian Empire.

http://www.donaldmichaelplatt.com
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXZthhY6 ... annel_page

User avatar
MLE (Emily Cotton)
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3564
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: started in childhood with the classics, which, IMHO are HF even if they were contemporary when written.
Favourite HF book: Prince of Foxes, by Samuel Shellabarger
Preferred HF: Currently prefer 1600 and earlier, but I'll read anything that keeps me turning the page.
Location: California Bay Area

Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Sun August 28th, 2011, 6:35 pm

A high, nasal voice, or one that sounds childish or girlish, is a definite turn-off to almost all women. A man who sounds brutish and rude is an instant 'ugh!' for me, but there are lots of women who, consciously or unconsciously, find that attractive. Things like that are individual and heavily dependent on the individual's history.

Women are, on average, much more sensitive to tones of voice and nuances of facial expression. It's an area of the brain that FMRI studies have shown to be much more active in the female. That's why men have this almost magical idea of 'women's intuition' -- and it isn't supernatural at all, it's just an ability to read people's intent better, without really knowing why. Or understanding that their male counterparts aren't receiving the same level of information.

Disclaimer: there is a double overlapping bell curve on all male/female traits. There will be some percentage of males who fall into the high female range on any given characteristic, and the same can be said for women falling into the range more typical for males.

User avatar
LoveHistory
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3751
Joined: September 2008
Location: Wisconsin, USA
Contact:

Post by LoveHistory » Mon August 29th, 2011, 3:21 am

I dislike male whining. The nasal thing bugs me too, but mostly in people's singing voices. Also bad grammar bothers me. Other than that I can't say I've thought about it much. I'll have to pay more attention to voices from now on.

User avatar
Divia
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 4435
Joined: August 2008
Location: Always Cloudy, Central New York

Post by Divia » Mon August 29th, 2011, 3:30 am

Men should never whine.
Men should never cry. Unless they are at a funeral.

I have only described one voice in my novel and that was a male character's voice. To be honest I never thought about doing it for other characters.
News, views, and reviews on books and graphic novels for young adult.
http://yabookmarks.blogspot.com/

User avatar
Alisha Marie Klapheke
Avid Reader
Posts: 376
Joined: November 2010
Location: Franklin, TN
Contact:

Post by Alisha Marie Klapheke » Mon August 29th, 2011, 1:24 pm

[quote=""MLE""]Women are, on average, much more sensitive to tones of voice and nuances of facial expression. It's an area of the brain that FMRI studies have shown to be much more active in the female. That's why men have this almost magical idea of 'women's intuition' -- and it isn't supernatural at all, it's just an ability to read people's intent better, without really knowing why. Or understanding that their male counterparts aren't receiving the same level of information. [/quote]

That is really interesting, MLE! Thanks for sharing. I know it's true for me and my husband. He never realizes people are mad or intrigued or frightened if their facial expressions are minimal.
Last edited by Alisha Marie Klapheke on Mon August 29th, 2011, 1:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: oops

User avatar
Mythica
Bibliophile
Posts: 1095
Joined: November 2010
Preferred HF: European and American (mostly pre-20th century)
Location: Colorado
Contact:

Post by Mythica » Mon August 29th, 2011, 5:58 pm

[quote=""MLE""]A high, nasal voice, or one that sounds childish or girlish, is a definite turn-off to almost all women. A man who sounds brutish and rude is an instant 'ugh!' for me, but there are lots of women who, consciously or unconsciously, find that attractive. Things like that are individual and heavily dependent on the individual's history.

Women are, on average, much more sensitive to tones of voice and nuances of facial expression. It's an area of the brain that FMRI studies have shown to be much more active in the female. That's why men have this almost magical idea of 'women's intuition' -- and it isn't supernatural at all, it's just an ability to read people's intent better, without really knowing why. Or understanding that their male counterparts aren't receiving the same level of information.

Disclaimer: there is a double overlapping bell curve on all male/female traits. There will be some percentage of males who fall into the high female range on any given characteristic, and the same can be said for women falling into the range more typical for males.[/quote]

My husband definitely falls outside the norm for men - he can read people really well and is very intuitive.... some of his friends even call it his "spidey sense", lol.

Sharz
Reader
Posts: 249
Joined: October 2009
Location: Chicago

Post by Sharz » Mon August 29th, 2011, 8:39 pm

First question -- men's voices definitely have an effect on their level of attractiveness or lack of thereof, for me. While watching Speed (IIRC) my husband asked me whether I thought Keanu Reeves was cute. I paused a moment and said, "Well, he was, until he opened is mouth." He thought that was hilarious.

That info on bell curve male v bell curve female makes sense. But strangely enough, my husband and I are both on the other sex's side of the curves. He reads people SOOOOO much better than I do. We think he learned it because he was forced to, in order to survive on a sales floor (clothing stores for something like 15 years).

User avatar
DianeL
Bibliophile
Posts: 1029
Joined: May 2011
Location: Midatlantic east coast, United States
Contact:

Post by DianeL » Tue August 30th, 2011, 1:37 am

I don't describe voices much, but the one I can remember offhand is the first lover of a female character in the WIP, whose voice is so warm and low it all but reaches down her (nonexistent, as they'd be period-inappropriate) pants and plays around there. In The Ax and the Vase, I actually spent very little verbiage on physical description, as the POV was that of a male character I just couldn't have talking about his friends' ruddy coloring or stout builds, nor even to excess about his wives or children. My readers tell me the work is evocative enough they didn't notice, as they envisioned the characters without prompting.

Apparently, this is appropriate to his gender tendency!

In the WIP, I've taken a lot of enjoyment out of including a lot more observation and description. This will likely include more voices as the work goes! The central characters are female in this case.
"To be the queen, she agreed to be the widow!"

***

The pre-modern world was willing to attribute charisma to women well before it was willing to attribute sustained rationality to them.
---Medieval Kingship, Henry A. Myers

***

http://dianelmajor.blogspot.com/
I'm a Twit: @DianeLMajor

Post Reply

Return to “Chat”