Whose Voice is This?

There is only one way to find your writing voice, your style, and that is to write and rewrite until you get there.

To demonstrate that even great novelists struggle to find their voices, here is a 1927 excerpt from a book written by a famous writer before he found the voice he is so well known for:

“The Nausikaa lay in the basin – a nice thing, with her white, matronly hull and mahogany-and-brass superstructure and the yacht club flag at the peak. A firm, steady wind blew in from the lake and Mrs. Maurier, having already got a taste of the sea from it, had donned her yachting cap and she now clashed and jangled in a happy, pointless ecstasy. Her two cars had made several trips and would make several more, creeping and jouncing along the inferior macadam road upon and beside the spoor of coca cola and the almond bar betrayed the lair of the hot dog and the less-than-one-percent. All the jollity of departure under a perfect day, heat ridden city behind, and a breeze too steady for the darn things to light on you. Her guests each with his or her jar of almond cream and sunburn lotion came aboard in bright, babbling surges, calling, “Ship ahoy, every one,” and other suitable nautical cries, while various casuals, gathered along the quay, looked on with morose interest. Mrs. Maurier in her yachting cap clashed and jangled in a happy and senseless excitement.
On the upper deck where the steward broke out chairs for them, her guests in their colored clothing, gathered, dressed for deep water in batik and flowing ties and open collars, informal and colorful with the exception of Mark Frost, the ghostly young man, a poet who produced an occasional cerebral and obscure poem in four or seven lines, reminding one somehow of the function of evacuation excruciatingly and incompletely performed. He wore ironed serge and a high starched collar and he borrowed a cigarette of the steward and lay immediately at full length on something, as was his way. Mrs. Wiseman and Miss Jameson, flanking Mr. Talliafero, sat with cigarettes also. Fairchild, accompanied by Gordon, the Semitic man and a florid stranger in heavy tweeds, and carrying among them several weighty looking suitcases, had gone directly below.
“Are we all here? Are we all here?” Mrs. Maurier chanted beneath her yachting cap, roving her eyes among her guests…”

Can you guess who this is? We will tell you the novelist’s name and the book on Tuesday’s blog.