Who are you?

I'm John Magnet Bell. I’ve been a translator and transcreator for 12 years, and also a photographer and photo illustrator. You can find me at ArtistWebsites.com by Fine Art America, Tumblr, and Society6.

What was Start Your Novel?

Twice a week, I would post one or two small writing prompts, 50 words or less. I called those story-seeds and gave them to anyone who would use them. To me, Start Your Novel began as an adventure in open-source storytelling.

I know I called the website “Start Your Novel,” but you can use my snippets for anything you please -- short stories, novellas, RPG settings, comics, anything. Copyright is hereby waived, so help yourself to the archive. If somehow you make millions off an idea you got from me, good for you. Credit would be appreciated. That’s it.

Why did you create this website?

A while ago I realized that I like to motivate others. Inspiration is hard to come by. Some of us writers are lazy and need a little push. Well, “Start Your Novel” is intended to do just that --- nudge you in the right direction. 

If you want to know more about the reasons for creating and maintaining this blog, I recommend Blogging with my Pants Off and my Heart on my Sleeve.

How often do you post?

Before 2015, I updated the blog regularly on Wednesdays and Fridays. On any given week I would add a couple of extra blog posts. These extra posts can be of any length and topics vary greatly, from tongue-in-cheek discussions about adverbs in good writing, to writer's block as a warning sign, to historical figures or beloved creators like Gene Roddenberry and Frida Kahlo.

Starting April 2015, I will blog every week, at least once a week. More than once is lagniappe. 

black crane over setting sun
by John Magnet Bell

Can I still use one or more of the 500 story prompts you published before 2015?

Sure, just make sure nobody's used them before. You want to avoid embarrassment, right? As far as I'm concerned, all the unused story prompts on Start Your Novel are copyright-free. You've still got hundreds to choose from.

So, no more copyright-free story prompts?

No, only my personal brand of blogging from now on. (2015.)

Let's say I want to talk to you one-one-one. What's the easiest way to do that?

You can add me on Google+ and say something.
You can @ me on Twitter.
Or follow me on Tumblr and use their message form.

by John Magnet Bell