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DIY MFA Radio

DIY MFA Radio Episode 154: Interview with Sarah Dessen — Writing from Your Heart and Soul

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In this episode Gabriela Pereira interviews bestselling author Sarah Dessen about her latest contemporary YA novel, Once and For All. Sarah’s novels are known for showing what life as a teenager is really like, and her latest novel is no exception as it shines a light into the darker areas of teenage love and heartbreak. In this interview, Sarah takes us behind the scenes of her writing process to show us how she crafts a balance between light and dark in her novels and how even with thirteen books she still faces many challenges of writing. For more detailed show notes: DIYMFA.com/154. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts)…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 153: Interview with Karen Dionne – From Midlist to Breakout Author

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In this episode, Gabriela Pereira interviews author Karen Dionne. They discuss how to craft complex and believable characters in the psychological suspense genre, so that even the villain has their sympathetic moments for readers. Karen takes us behind the scenes of her breakout novel The Marsh King’s Daughter, and how shifting gears in her writing mindset advanced her career from midlist to bestseller. For more detailed show notes: DIYMFA.com/153. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is: write with focus,…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 152: Interview with Lisa Preziosi — Writing a Modern Day Fairy Tale

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In this DIY MFA Radio episode Gabriela Pereira interviews author Lisa Preziosi about her debut novel, The Ice Maiden’s Tale. Lisa’s middle grade novel is a modern day fairy tale, with a nested-story framework and dual point of view. In this interview, Lisa gives us a window into she crafted the various layers of this story, and explains how she used traditional motifs, various settings, and strong characters to drive the plot of this unique book. For more detailed show notes: DIYMFA.com/152. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFAThis means that to create a do-it-yourself version…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 151: Interview with Robin Lovett — Let’s Talk About Sex (in Romance Novels)

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In this episode Gabriela Pereira interviews romance author and DIY MFA Romance columnist Robin Lovett. They discuss the steamier side of the romance novel, and how to craft love scenes full of tension that make the reader want more. Robin lets us into the world of her dark stalker romances, and teases apart the complex intricacies of crafting a great romance novel.   ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is: write with focus, read with purpose, and build your…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 149: Interview with Mark Gottlieb — How to Pitch Your Book

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In this episode Gabriela Pereira interviews literary agent Mark Gottlieb of Trident Media Group. They discuss the exciting and terrifying Pitch Slam, and the best way to craft a query that hooks an agent. Mark gives us a window into an agent’s mind at a Pitch Slam event, the best strategies to craft a spoken pitch, and how to pique an agent’s interest with a unique hook. For more detailed show notes, visit DIYMFA.com/149. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 148: Interview with Jay Swanson — Multimedia Storytelling

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In this episode, Gabriela Pereira interviews vlogger and author Jay Swanson. They discuss Into the Nanten, the first ever real-time internet novel and talk about the challenges and joys of sharing your creative work across different media. Jay shares different creative strategies, why they worked (or didn’t) and how he has refined his artistic approach over time. For more detailed show notes, visit DIYMFA.com/148.   ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is: write with focus, read with purpose, and…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 147: Interview with Jenni Walsh and Bess Cozby — The Author/Editor Team

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In this episode, Gabriela Pereira does something a little bit different and interviews both a debut author, Jenni Walsh, and the editor who helped bring the book to life, Bess Cozby! This interview gives listeners a window into a side of publishing we rarely get to see: the author-editor team. Gabriela moderates an in-depth discussion of all the moving parts involved in bringing Jenni’s debut novel, Becoming Bonnie, to the shelves. For more detailed show notes go to:: DIYMFA.com/147.   ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 146: Interview with K.M. Weiland — Create Compelling Character Arcs

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This week, Gabriela Pereira interviews author K.M. Weiland about creating strong character arcs. They discuss the three types of character arcs, how to recognize each one, and craft it for maximum effect, plus how to fix a story that has no arc. They also talk about why theme is an essential element in a story, and how to use it well. For more info, go to DIYMFA.com/146. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFAThis means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is: write with focus, read with purpose,…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 144: Interview with Herb Freed — Telling a True Story

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In this week’s podcast, Gabriela interviews movie director and author Herb Freed about his book, Bashert. They discuss the process of writing a novel based on real-life events, and why he chose to write this book as a novel rather than a memoir. They talk about how to use fiction to tell true stories and the difference between facts and the truth-with-a-capital-T. Listen in, also, to hear tidbits of how Herb’s background in filmmaking influenced his writing this book. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 142: Interview with Kathleen Audet — Discover Your Authentic Image

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On this week’s DIY MFA episode, Gabriela Pereira hosts image consultant Kathleen Audet on the show. In this information-packed interview, they discuss two different ways that image and appearance play into a writer’s work. On one hand, you can use specific details to bring your characters to life on the page, and use image-related techniques to better understand your characters. On a deeper level, however, image also applies to an author’s career and the importance of first impressions. When you learn some basic concepts around clothing and appearance, you better align how you present yourself on the outside with who you are on the inside. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 141: From Short Stories to Novels — Interview with Susan Perabo

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In this week’s podcast episode, Gabriela Pereira interviews author Susan Perabo about short stories vs. novels, and what writers can learn from both forms. In their conversation, they draw examples from Susan’s new novel, The Fall of Lisa Bellow. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is: write with focus, read with purpose, and build your community. Read on to learn more or use the menu above to explore each category. We’ve also highlighted some key DIY MFA articles below to…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 140: Writing Multiple POV Suspense — Interview with Jessica Strawser

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In this week’s DIY MFA Radio episode, Gabriela Pereira interviews Jessica Strawser, editorial director of Writer’s Digest magazine, and author of the stunning debut novel, Almost Missed You. They talk about writing multiple point-of-view suspense and how to craft that crucial first chapter for maximum impact on your readers. They also discuss the juggling act involved with being moms who write and also have busy “day jobs.” (It is possible to balance it all!) ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is:…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 139: Be the Gateway — Interview with Dan Blank

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This week, Gabriela Pereira interviews marketing mentor Dan Blank about his nonfiction debut, BE THE GATEWAY. In this book, Dan offers a fresh approach to marketing for writers, focusing not on hollow metrics or arbitrary numbers, but on forging genuine connections with their readers. Listen in to learn how to make similar mindset shift in looking at your own platform, so you can focus on what really matters for your author career. ABOUT DIY MFA Here’s a secret no one ever tells you. The typical MFA (Master of Fine Arts) boils down to one simple formula: Writing + Reading + Community = MFA This means that to create a do-it-yourself version of the MFA, all you need to do is: write…

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 136: Adventures in Metafiction — Interview with Dale Wiley

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In this week’s podcast episode, Gabriela Pereira interviews author Dale Wiley about the writing process, metafiction, and his latest book: Southern Gothic. Listen in to hear them talk about: how metafiction works, how you can use it to tell your story, and which pitfalls you need to avoid. They also tackle the tricky subject of how to write about writing, why it’s not always a good strategy, but how you can do it right. Plus, you’ll hear Dale share his number one tip for writers.

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 134: Literature as a Reflection of Society – Interview with Dr. Sally Parry

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In this week’s timely episode on DIY MFA, Gabriela Pereira interviews Dr. Sally Parry, Executive Director of the Sinclair Lewis society. They discuss Lewis’ novel It Can’t Happen Here and talk about the role of literature in activism and how books can be more than simply a reflection of society.

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DIY MFA Radio Episode 132: Capturing Diverse Experiences on the Page — Interview with Shanthi Sekaran

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This week Gabriela Pereira interviews Shanthi Sekaran about her new novel: Lucky Boy. This moving story is about two unforgettable women in California: an undocumented Mexican woman and an Indian-American wife, both of whom love the same child but can’t have him. The novel beautifully weaves together the themes of motherhood, immigration, infertility, adoption and minority life in America. It is a must-read in our current political environment. For more detailed show notes, visit DIYMFA.com/132.

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