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Write Great Fiction - Plot & Structure Paperback – Oct 6 2004

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Writer's Digest Books; Fifth Edition edition (Oct. 6 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158297294X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582972947
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.5 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 399 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #58,299 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

A former trial lawyer, James Scott Bell is an award-winning author and frequent speaker at writing conferences.

Inside This Book

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I wasted ten years of prime writing life because of the Big Lie. Read the first page
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Ned Middleton TOP 500 REVIEWER on Oct. 24 2012
Format: Paperback
This review is based on personal experience and is penned in a bid to help other aspiring writers.

I have been writing about scuba diving and shipwrecks for several years (my first piece appeared in 1978!), and my books have won awards. That genre, however, involves research and describing whatever I find underwater.

Quite separately, for many years I have been working on a novel only to discover Fiction is not as easy as it might appear - even for a modestly successful writer such as myself. Fiction is not about my ability to tell a particular story. Instead, it requires me to learn how to weave intrigue into the everyday life of the central character so that the reader WANTS to continue reading. For example, a Memoirs or Biography is the retelling of a series of events - year by year, as they happen to the subject of the work. The life of a fictional character, however, cannot be a series of stories without the addition of unanswered questions and other events of which he is unaware (the intrigue!) along the way. In my case; yes I have a central plot, yes there is sex and violence (in moderation!) and yes the outcome is exciting. That however, is not enough and is why I have found myself starting and shelving the book over many years.

Finally, I recently purchased a number of books about writing techniques and the various lessons I need to learn. I am studying each in turn and each will be reviewed in time.

As the cover of `Write Great Fiction - Plot & Structure' by James Scott Bell suggests, this book gives an insight into "Techniques and exercises for crafting a plot that grips readers from start to finish." Already, I have learned a great deal and would suggest any would-be author of Fiction should study this excellent work.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Material Girl in a Fantasy World on Dec 17 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Before purchasing this book, I had borrowed a copy from the local library and read it. I was skeptical initially, because I always thought that plotting was my strong point in writing and I probably wouldn't need a book to tell me more about it. Boy, I was wrong! There are so many things I learned from this book that it has improved my writing tenfold. The author shows us how to make each scene, each chapter full of tension and suspense, and to weave this in and out in a such a way as to make the entire book unputdownable.

When I had the library copy with me, I found myself making plenty of notes based on the tips provided. Then I said to myself that I might as well get my own copy so that I save the time spent on note-taking and use it for actually writing something!

I would definitely recommend this to anyone wanting to take their writing a notch (make that several notches) higher.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Elford on Nov. 4 2014
Format: Paperback
I just finished reading this and would recommend it to any beginner. I've got the others in this series lined up ready to go and I hope they help me out as much as this one did.

Though I've got hundreds of scene ideas noted down, I'm just starting out to actually do something with them really, I learn t a least a dozen l more things to help refine my structure especially in the areas of making a page turner. My copy now has loads of bookmarks and highlights I expect to refer back to regularly. I probably won't do all the exercises, just the ones that appeal to me for my goals. The rest of the book is more interesting to me.

I don't know if what is in here is old news to experienced writers, but if something isn't working for your draft, perhaps worth take a look.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By K. Quinteros on June 27 2009
Format: Paperback
As an aspiring writer, this book helped me structure my story. If you want a book that will teach you beginings, middles and ends, and where in your story each begins and ends, this is the one for you. The tips were very helpful and the book was well written.
This is one of the best books I've read in fiction writing.
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