Regain Momentum in Your Story Middle

Regain Momentum In Your Story Middle with Tiffany Yates Martin

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Learn how to avoid a mushy middle while adding more depth and dimension to your story.

Is there anything more thrilling for the creative soul than starting a shiny new story? It seduces you effortlessly, promising you a dazzling future, and in the heady flush of new love it feels as if this perfect communion between you will never end.

Then comes the middle of the book.

When things get tough, that doesn’t mean the story isn’t worth fighting for. Figuring out the problem and eliminating the sag can add even more depth and dimension to your book.

When a manuscript loses its momentum, the issue is often one of several culprits:

  • The plot has lost its cohesion.
  • The characters aren’t progressing on their arcs.
  • The story stakes have deflated.
  • Tension and suspense have lagged.

In this Wednesday, Nov. 18 live class, taught by Tiffany Yates Martin, you’ll learn how to spot what may be derailing your story, with specific, actionable methods to get things back on track. This workshop will cover:

  • How to create an X-ray of your story and see whether the plot holds together and consistently propels readers along the story arc.
  • Specific questions you can ask to determine which scenes might be treading water and why—and how they can be fixed or cut altogether to get the story moving again.
  • How to take a microscope to your protagonists’ arcs to ensure character motivations and goals are strong and clear and that they are driving the action toward achieving them.
  • Whether you may be “puppet mastering” and how to tell if the characters are rebelling.
  • How to determine whether the consequences for failure (or the reward for success) remain strong and clear throughout, both on a big-picture level and within each scene, and how to address the issue if not with various techniques (new challenges or dangers; more reward; more urgency; heightened meaning).
  • How to discover whether suspense and tension elements are lacking or have been resolved too soon, and how to organically weave in more uncertainty and questions in the reader’s mind, and more conflict and obstacles, to help propel the story.

Who should take this class

  • Fiction writers working in any genre
  • Beginning to intermediate novel writers
  • Writers of memoir (memoirs need a strong, cohesive story arc, too)
  • Creative writing students of any age

How do I know if this webinar is worth the cost?

This is an important question, and it’s a tough one to answer—especially since so much online education is available free of charge. Furthermore, every student is different, and a valuable webinar for one person can end up being a disappointment to another. For this reason, we offer full refunds if you register, attend the entire class, and fail to get the information you were looking for. Please email us directly to request a refund.

Do I have to attend the live class?

No. Everyone who registers will get access to the recording. However, if you’d like to attend live, keep reading.

How do I attend the live class?

This class uses Zoom webinar technology. You will join through your Internet-connected computer or mobile device. When you register, you will receive information via email on how to join the class. If you don’t receive it within 1 hour of registering, please contact us.

  • When: Wednesday, November 18, 2020
  • Time: 1 p.m.–2 p.m. Eastern Time / 10 a.m. Pacific Time
  • Fee: $25

The webinar is broadcasted via the internet with live audio delivered through your computer or mobile device speakers. The visual presentation is displayed directly from the presenter’s computer to your computer screen. The Q&A is managed through a chat-style submission system with questions read and answered by the presenter for the entire class to hear.

Closed captions are provided for the live class. We use Rev’s closed caption service, powered by AI, which is about 80%+ accurate. Keep in mind there is a time delay; transcription speed varies based on how fast the Internet hamsters run that day.

Tiffany Yates Martin

About the instructor

Tiffany Yates Martin has spent nearly thirty years as an editor in the publishing industry, working with major publishers and NY Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling, award-winning authors as well as indie and newer writers, and is the author of the Amazon bestseller Intuitive Editing: A Creative and Practical Guide to Revising Your Writing. She’s led workshops and seminars for conferences and writers’ groups across the country and is a frequent contributor to writers’ sites and publications. Under the pen name Phoebe Fox, she’s the author of the Breakup Doctor series and her most recent release, A Little Bit of Grace (Berkley). Learn more at her website.

You did an excellent job, as usual. Full of information and engaging! Thank you again! I’m reenergized for tackling my backstory issues with my WIP.

Lisa Malice

Events Coordinator, Sisters In Crime

Awesome job with the webinar. It was great—specific and to the point. And the examples actually worked REALLY well. Made it super real and obvious how to do it subtly versus with the proverbial sledgehammer. 

Lainey Cameron 

Student & client

Best webinar in a great while.



You’ll receive the following

  • Access to the 60-minute interactive class. After 45–60 minutes, Tiffany will take questions using in-class chat/text. The class will end after roughly 60 minutes.
  • A recording of the class—audio and video. This is especially helpful if you have a conflict with the class time or something comes up and you can’t make the session. Each registration comes with access to the archived version of the program and the materials for 30 days. You do not have to attend the live event to get a recording of the presentation.
  • Presentation slides. All participants receive a copy of the slide presentation in PDF form.
  • Rough transcript. We use Otter to create an automated transcript of the entire webinar, which we’ll share with you in addition to the audio and video recording.
  • Supplementary worksheets: After the class, you’ll receive a handout outlining the principles in the presentation, as well as sample scene setups to help you ask questions to determine what readers need to know.

Event Attendance & Anti-Harassment Policy

We strive to provide an environment where all present—whether attendee, presenter, or staff—can feel supported. In order to ensure a welcoming event, here is what we expect from all who participate.

  • That the presenter and the presenter’s work be treated with respect by attendees and that all attendees treat each other with respect and a generosity of spirit.
  • That attendees will refrain from harassment of any sort including (but not limited to) comments or questions of a racist, homophobic, sexist/sexual, or threatening nature. This includes actions that disrupt or interfere with anyone’s ability to participate. Offenders will be disconnected from the live event.

System Requirements to Join the Webinar

We will be using Zoom webinar technology.

You’ll need:

  • An internet connection: broadband wired or wireless (3G or 4G/LTE)
  • Speakers: built-in or USB plug-in or wireless Bluetooth

Recommended bandwidth:

  • 600kbps (down) for high-quality video and 1.2 Mbps (down) for HD video
  • If you connect through audio only: 60-80kbps (down)

Supported operating systems:

Supported tablet and mobile devices:

  • Surface PRO 2 running Win 8.1
  • iOS and Android devices
  • Blackberry devices

Supported browsers:

  • Windows: IE 11+,  Edge 12+, Firefox 27+,  Chrome 30+
  • Mac: Safari 7+, Firefox 27+,  Chrome 30+
  • Linux: Firefox 27+,  Chrome 30+

For a detailed listing of system requirements, check Zoom’s site.