Episode 108: Write Your Novel From the Middle – Interview with James Scott Bell

by Gabriela Pereira
published in Podcast

Hey there Word Nerds!

I’m so excited to share this episode with you. Today I am thrilled to be  interviewing someone who I have honor of calling a mentor and friend: James Scott Bell. Jim is the author of the #1 bestseller for writers, Plot & Structure, and numerous thrillers, including his Mike Romeo series, the latest of which is Romeo’s Way.

He is also a wonderful teacher who has taught writing at numerous conferences and I’ve had the pleasure of hearing him speak at several events. Each time I come out learning a valuable new technique that I can apply to my work right away. As a teacher, his superpower lies in the way he explains plot and story structure. Whenever I have questions about how to structure a book or plot a story, I always look first to his books or the notes I took in one of his conference sessions.

So get those pens and notepads ready, people, because you are going to learn a LOT during this episode. Today Jim and I talk about what is perhaps one of the most important, and yet most often overlooked elements of your story: the midpoint.

In this episode Jim and I discuss:

  • The difference between plot and story
  • The midpoint (or mirror moment) of your story and why it’s important
  • How to use the middle of the story to make the beginning and ending make sense
  • Pre-story psychology of your main character
  • Using Scrivener to help structure your story

Plus, Jim’s #1 tip for writers.

More about James Scott Bell:

JAMES SCOTT BELL is the author of the #1 bestseller for writers, Plot & Structure, and numerous thrillers, including, Romeo’s Rules, Try Dying, and Don’t Leave Me. In addition to his traditional novels, Jim has self-published in a variety of forms. His novella One More Lie was the first self-published work to be nominated for an International Thriller Writers Award.

Jim has served as the fiction columnist for Writer’s Digest magazine and has written highly popular craft books including: Write Your Novel From the Middle, Super Structure, The Art of War for Writers, and Conflict & Suspense. (<< Book links on this page are Amazon affiliate links. Thank you for supporting DIY MFA.) If you’re a writer looking for help plotting and structuring your novel, Jim’s books are among my favorite resources on plot and story structure. His latest book: The Mental Game of Writing is short, sweet, and packs a punch. It’s also very much in line with the mindset tools we teach at DIY MFA.

Jim has taught writing at Pepperdine University and at numerous writers conferences in the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Australia, and New Zealand. He attended the University of California, Santa Barbara where he studied writing with Raymond Carver, and graduated with honors from the University of Southern California Law Center. To learn more about Jim and his writing, hop on over to his website www.jamesscottbell.com or follow him on Twitter and Facebook.

Link to Episode 108

(Right-click to download.)

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Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome.

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