How to Add Tension to Your Scenes

How to Add Tension to Your Scenes

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A mystery or thriller becomes a page-turner when scenes are packed with tension. Not just above-the-surface plot developments, but inside characters, too. In this presentation, author James Scott Bell shows what you can do to ratchet up the tension in any scene you write. You'll come away with an understanding of scene structure, the "fear factor," dialogue as weapon, how to get into a scene at the best moment, and how to leave a scene so a reader must turn the page!


James Scott Bell is a winner of the International Thriller Writers Award and the author of numerous bestsellers. He served as fiction columnist for Writer's Digest magazine and has written many popular craft books, including Plot & Structure, Conflict & Suspense, Just Write, and Write Your Novel From the Middle. 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 school. A former trial lawyer, Jim lives and writes in Los Angeles. His website is You can follow him on Twitter: @jamesscottbell.

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