Huffington Post Charts Kay Alden’s Bell Soap Opera Career

We’ve all heard the very familiar story of how viewers started to watch soap operas. Fans would be at home with their mom or grandmother during the summer break, with no other option of television programming. Has anyone ever wondered how soap writers got their start?

 A profile piece in The Huffington Post revealed legendary scribe Kay Alden  got her start by writing a dissertation for her PhD at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  Where did the late William J. Bell come into play?
According to the article:

As part of her research for her dissertation, the brainy blonde found Chicagoan William J. Bell's number in the phone book and called the creator of the CBS soap, The Young and the Restless for an interview. She went to his home on Lake Shore Drive and a requested 45 minute interview turned into 2 1/2 hours.

After submitting sample scripts over a period of months, Kay ended up as a writer for The Young and the Restless, starting on May 13, 1974 (my nephew Jack's birthday) through 2006 when she left for a short stint as a consultant for ABC'sAll My Children.


Bill Bell Biography Comes Out in Paperback

Lee Phillip Bell and Michael Maloney's biography of the late William J. Bell has now been released on paperback. Fans of the legendary soap scribe can learn all about the co-creator of Another WorldThe Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful in the pages of The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell

Said Maloney:
I hope soap fans enjoy the The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell. It's a chronicle of Bill and Lee's inspiring life together -- how they met, fell in love, followed their dreams, and built a soap opera empire along the way. There's much of Bill's philosophies on serialized storytelling in the book and untold anecdotes from the golden age of soap operas.

DC Interview: Bell Biographer Michael Maloney on Collaborating With Lee Phillip Bell, Family Legacy and What Made Bill Bell a Storyteller


There aren't many men who know what it's like to collaborate with Chicago-talk-queen-turned-soap-opera-legend Lee Phillip Bell. There was her late husband, the legendary William J. Bell, whom she co-created two of CBS Daytime's long-running hits, The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful, with. Now there's also veteran soap journalist Michael Maloney, the man Phillip Bell chose to help tell her prolific husband's life story in The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell: Creator of The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the BeautifulFor his part, Maloney is quite aware of what auspicious company he's been keeping while working with Phillip Bell on the tome.

"Whenever I see my name in a press release, or on the cover of the book with Lee Phillip Bell, I think, 'The last time I might have seen something with her name on it, with someone else, was probably on the credits of Y&R and B&B.' You know, 'co-created by'. I'm thinking that's pretty damn good company to be in!"

You wouldn't find many soap fans, addicted to the countless hours of daytime television enjoyment the Bells have provided over the past several decades, who would disagree with Maloney's assertion. The author worked with Phillip Bell, as well as several of the late Bill Bell's friends, colleagues and children, for years in creating The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell. The biography spans Bell's entire lifes and tells the story of his great love for Lee, their children and the daytime dramas they created together.