Saturday, July 21, 2018

When to Use the Passive Voice?

Today I attended a meeting for writing that I had only learned about two days ago. I went with another of the mentors at the center where I work. Not every many people were there.  

I'd brought the current copy of my memoir and let one of the ladies skim through it. She gave me mostly positive feedback for what she was able to read. But she did say one thing that got me a little anxious--that a lot of my story was in passive voice. My friend said she too has trouble with that.

The image above comes from this site.

I can imagine how hard it must be for people to avoid the passive voice. And I'm getting anxiety over the possibility of having to go over my entire manuscript and make everything active. There have to be some instances in which the passive is all right to use. This is the first time anyone indicated this about my memoir.

How many of you have been told this about your writing? 

1 comment:

  1. It is a tricky one, but certainly in a story with any action passive voice tends to detract from it.
    I was told that passive voice is fine when you want to focus on the effect of the action rather than the perpetrator (if that makes sense).