I always used to try and write with a voice that was not my own. Sounding more professional in my mind would sound more appealing to my audience. I managed to learn how to stay on track better if I kept on reassuring myself of my tone and what language I am aiming for. I write in my own way now. My thoughts still are not very confident-sounding, and yet they make more sense then they did before. I feel like my focus is more clear, my thesis is properly stated now, and my audience can better see the direction my essay is heading towards. For my first project, I focused on the tone being a story-teller, and telling the story of Becky's experience.
My second project was actually easier to develop a constant tone throughout. I think this is because I have read a lot of analytical essays before - since I crave knowledge and constantly Google anything and everything - and I generally knew how I wanted my readers to grasp what I was relaying to them. However, I also realized that I kept on practicing the basic problem of wordiness. I would try to fit in a whole bunch of information into one sentence, and it came across as terribly confusing. For example, I would try and talk about the meaning of pathos (for example), how pathos is used, and an example of it all in one sentence. Once I revised and made multiple sentences describing pathos, it made more sense. My essay was much stronger. I also had to think about the tone of the whole paragraph, because I would switch tones sometimes mid-thought (almost like how my brain works). One sentence I would be talking about food, and the next would be around Hungry Planet. I either had to show evidence as to why I was taking the reader off-track (actually connecting the idea of food to the project), or just delete the whole thought and continue on with the original idea of rhetorical appeals. This if the first time in a class where a professor has ever been serious about tone, and for me, I don't actually know why my past professors have never brought it up. I realize now how truly affective tone is in getting your point across! It's like with singing, if you pronounce the consonants more, you sound more emotional. It's like that with tone and writing - you give off more emotion if your tone is perfected.
Generally, my voice is somewhat innocent since I am still pretty young myself. However, I feel like this gives me an advantage. It's like saying, "Hey, I didn't know anything about this beforehand, but look at what I know now!" It's also like when you hear children speak, and they sound so profound. It's just because they are learning things for the first time. We've all been there. As an author, I feel like I can relate to my audience using this innocence in my tone, and (kind of like ethos) emotionally grab my audience's attention.