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  • Write Your Novel from the Middle

  • A New Approach for Plotters, Pantsers and Everyone in Between
  • By: James Scott Bell
  • Narrated by: James Scott Bell
  • Length: 2 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (23 ratings)

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Summary

A powerful secret and a fresh approach to writing bestselling fiction!

What's the best way to write a "next level" novel? Some writers start at the beginning and let the story unfold without a plan. They are called "pantsers", because they write by the "seat of the pants".

Other writers plan and outline and know the ending before they start. These are the "plotters".

The two sides never seem to agree with each other on the best approach.

But what if it's not the beginning or the end that is the key to a successful book? What if, amazing as it may seem, the place to begin writing your novel is in the very middle of the story?

According to #1 bestselling writing teacher James Scott Bell, that's exactly where you'll find your story's heart and heat. Bell's "Mirror Moment" is the secret, and its power is available to any writer, at any stage of the writing process.

Bringing together years of craft study and personal discovery, Bell presents a truly unique approach to writing a novel, one that will stand the test of time and serve you all your writing life.

©2014 James Scott Bell (P)2019 James Scott Bell

Critic reviews

"I need three things before I tackle a new novel: Diet Coke, a laptop, and my dog-eared copies of James Scott Bell's books on writing craft!" (Kami Garcia, #1 New York Times and International Bestselling author)

What listeners say about Write Your Novel from the Middle

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if this was an article, it would be clickbate

dont get me wrong, there is some sound advice and thoughts here. it's worth a read. but it doesn't present an actual idea of writing from the middle. its actually breaking down the idea of starting from either the beginning midpoint or ending based on your heros character. also, dont get the audiobook as the quality is very poor.

2 people found this helpful

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Want to write a novel?

Inspirational. Works for me. Wouldn't be without these hot, hot tips. It's short and to the point and if you are writing fiction can only improve your work. Easy to follow and nicely spoken. Not to be missed.

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  • JK
  • 25-07-19

A Great Guide

Bell is a master of his craft and one who's books on writing I could read forever. This book is great and has a technique I will try myself. The problem with it is the quality of the recording. There is a constant loud hiss throughout, the edits are more than noticable, and you can even hear the keys being hit as if to end the recording process. If the author is going to keep recording his own audiobooks, then great, but he needs a better mic and set up.

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  • Jennifer
  • 14-09-20

Bell's excellent advice, less well conveyed

I recommend 'How to Write Bestselling Fiction' by the same author on the Great Courses. It has all the advice you'll find here and more with better production quality.

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  • KatieJ Kingland
  • 17-02-20

On Write Your Novel from the Middle

One of my jobs is a delivery driver and I have had this book, and others Bell has written, on audio for nearly eight hours straight per day for the last two weeks. They’re so clear, so concise, interesting, helpful. I really want to thank the author for how much he’s helped me.

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  • M. Clark
  • 19-09-19

Practical, brief, and instantly applicable

I had the pleasure of attending one of his workshops at a writers conference and his name keeps coming up in other craft books I’ve been reading, so I turn to this book for some guidance. I was literally stuck with some very basic plotting questions, even though I’ve already written my book. This was an incredibly quick listen, and I generated pages and pages of ideas and solutions to my problem. I also must say that I really like The authors voice as a narrator. He speaks naturally and has a positive, humorous and joyous tone. Definitely worth my time and definitely a book I recommend. I have a feeling this was a condensed version of the actual book, and I really liked how fast I was able to finish it and get on with my book. Unlike many authors, he is respectful of the readers time. I feel everything he said was rocksolid valuable information.

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  • L. Cullen
  • 17-09-19

Great info! Could have used a sound editor.

I will be recommending this book to my writer friends, but the audio is fairly inconsistent. Still worth it though!

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  • Andy Bryant
  • 07-05-20

What a surprise

There are too many gold nuggests of knowledge in this book to mention. The Creme dela Creme is that the author reads his own book to me, this made the information even more real. 5 stars

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  • Sol
  • 22-07-19

The Midpoint: An important insight

Subtracted a point for missing chapter titles, making the audio book less useful as a reference.

About 55% is about the idea regarding the midpoint as a mirror moment, the remainder of the book is about writing a page turner in general.

The information is highly valuable and I enjoyed listening to it. Short and to the point.

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  • Lawrence Obisakin
  • 04-02-21

Excellent Practical writer’s Teaching

What a practical writer’s manual. It is a very practical teaching resource book fir good writers. Plotters will find it very useful.
Write Your Novel from the middle should be a compelling resource book for writers.
I was impressed by the use of illustrations such as:
* using the image of a suspension bridge to teach structure
*giving practical textual examples on show don’t tell
* teaching psychological preparation exercises for inspiration of writers.

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  • C. Dove
  • 22-11-20

Incredibly Helpful!

I’m still trying to process all of the wisdom packed into this book, and am certain I’ll be back to listen to parts, if not the whole book again. As a new author, I’m in a constant debate, with myself, over where to begin and end my stories. Finally, I have the answer I’ve been looking for!

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  • Michael D.
  • 16-08-20

Not a great "audible" book

The author of the book is also the narrator of the book. I don't think the author does a great job of reading his own material. He speaks very slowly, he pauses after each sentence... it got to a point where I am more focused on how he's delivering his material than the material itself at times.

I think I paid less than $5 for this Audible production. Had I paid more, I'd be even more upset.

Chapter 3 of the book has a serious drop in volume. If you are like me and listen to a good chunk of your Audible books while driving in your car, you'll have to turn up the volume to hear the contents of that chapter.

Overall, the material is somewhat interesting, but I don't think the author does a convincing job of explaining why his "write your novel from the middle" approach is something more than an interesting concept as opposed to a consistent tool to use in your writing.

If you compare this Audible production to the books by K.M. Weiland where a professional narrator was used in the audio production, it's night and day what a trained voice sounds like and how it adds value to the production as opposed to an author -- while maybe good as a writer -- trying his hand at an audio production and not being the ideal person for delivering the material.

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  • Manuel Ontiveros
  • 04-08-20

i think its a helpful outlining tool

its a short and concise book for the first 8 chapters that teaches you how to look at oyher stories and your own in a more effective way. the last chapter is 45 minutes of him giving examples from a book.