In writing, style is the overall manner in which an author chooses to express his or her ideas. This includes word choice, sentence length, use of figurative language, tone and more. Style is what distinguishes one writer from another and can greatly impact the way readers view a particular piece of literature.
While most people understand what fashion style is, they may be less clear on personal and professional style. The question, “What’s your style?” is often asked during job interviews and can be a difficult one to answer. However, defining and developing a personal style is important for building self-confidence and creating an impactful first impression.
Whether you are looking to find your aesthetic clothing style or want to learn how to improve your writing style, the following tips can help you define and develop your unique style.
Style has been a form of self-expression and cultural identity since ancient times. From the flowing togas of Greek women to the tailored suits of Wall Street executives, fashionable clothing is a powerful tool for communicating who you are and what you stand for.
In a job interview, hiring managers will often ask the question, “What’s your style?” What they really are asking is, “How do you want to be perceived?” Research has shown that your clothing can actually influence the impression that others make of you. For example, if you want to appear professional, wearing dark colors and minimal accessories will convey a more formal image. Conversely, if you are trying to be seen as friendly and approachable, then brightly colored clothes or lots of jewelry might be more appropriate.
When determining your style, it is helpful to think about the way that you have wanted to be represented in the past. Think about a time when your style said exactly what you wanted it to say and how that made you feel. Try to identify the elements that make up that style and see if there are any ways that you can incorporate those into your current style.
As you work to develop your writing style, it is also important to experiment with different forms. For instance, the words that you choose in a love sonnet will likely be different than those used in an essay about your childhood, and sentence lengths will differ between short stories and speculative fiction. Ultimately, the goal of developing your writing style is to create an individual and distinct voice that will grab and hold reader’s attention.
So next time you are in the mood to browse magazines or websites, take a look at how the authors incorporate figurative language, tone and other stylistic choices into their work. You will quickly discover that they have a specific style that sets them apart from other writers. Then, the task becomes to apply those same techniques to your own work to make it your own. After all, no one wants to read the same exact book over and over again!