The "W" Plot...or The Other White Meat for Plotters ©

A Plotting Workshop
By Award-Winning Author, Karen Docter

One of the staples of any writers group conversations is the plot. It's integral to every novel, holds everything together. It's the vehicle that carries readers from page one to "The End". It's one of the scariest things an author faces when s/he decides, hey, I want to write a novel!

How many of us have made this decision, then stared at that blank page or computer screen without a clue how to proceed? What about those of us who write by the seat of our pants, the pantsers? Do we dare risk scaring off our muse by [shudder] plotting our story? How do the mega-plotters, the overachievers, know when it's time to stop and just put pen to paper?

Join four-time Golden Heart® finalist and Daphne du Maurier winner Karen Docter as she shares the "W" plotting technique she's used successfully for years.

Karen analyzes the movie "Romancing the Stone" to show how the technique works, discussing the detailed plot points for the main characters including the villain. Throughout this workshop, you'll uncover the skeleton of your own novel. Whatever your genre, not only will you have the tools you need to finish plotting your story using the "W", you'll know how to use it to write the synopsis we all love to hate...all without writing one word of the novel.

If you've already started your novel, that's okay. It's never too late to apply the principles of the "W" to your developing story. Have you run into a wall? Don't know where to go next? Has the story gone flat? Use the technique to pull apart the elements of your story so you can plug the holes, work through/over/around walls that loom in your path, and get moving on your story once again.

This is a hands-on-your-own-book workshop designed for the novice or the experienced writer.

  • For Appearance and Online Class Schedules, please go to NEWS. Paypal button is available below for Karen’s complete Online Lectures.

  • If you're interested in sponsoring this workshop, in person, please contact Karen Docter at [Requirements for personal appearance: Overhead projector/LCD screen, Expenses, No honorarium for RWA® chapters]

  • Available Now:

    "The 'W' Plot...or The Other White Meat for Plotters"© hands-on-your-own-book online lecture is currently available for purchase.

    The lecture packet is $25 (USD) each. To purchase, click on the PayPal link (below) and follow the instructions. After confirmation from PayPal, the complete online lecture will be sent to your email address in two separate emails.

    If you have any questions about the lecture or the purchasing process, please send an email to Thank you for your interest!



    ~ A goal without a plan is just a wish. ~

    Antoine de Saint-Exupery



    Designed & Maintained by J-J Designs
    Special thanks to Scott Carpenter for the banner.

    New Students of the "W"

    Karen's online W course on craft is the best approach to plotting I've ever come across. The W method offers a simple, basic way to nail down even the most complicated plot so you can spot holes in the story before you write the first word. No more 'sagging middles' and worrying about whether the story I'm writing is living up to its potential. Karen is a terrific instructor who gives thoughtful feedback every step of the way. I left the month long online course with a newfound confidence.

    ~ Margaret Carroll, Rita nominated author ~

    I've run the gamut--taken classes, attended seminars, won contests, even got agents interested in my work, but there was always a piece missing. When I signed up for Karen's class, I thought: What the heck--it can't hurt. But did it help? Wow! Game changer. I now have a viable roadmap to salvage my earlier work as well as a new direction for my WIP. Karen's method rocks! Totally.

    ~ Kristen Boe ~

    The "W" for plotting combines the best of practicality and creativity. This step-by-step plan encourages writers to explore their characters and what happens between them. I highly recommend it to both beginning and advanced writers. The workshop is well worth the time.

    ~ Jane Choate, Published Author ~

    Recently I attended Karen Docter's Plotting "W" Workshop, skeptical because I'm an In-the Mist-writer. But let's face it sometimes In-the Mist writers get derailed due to fog. Karen's "W" workshop lets you chart a course from beginning to middle to end, not only for your protagonists, but for your antagonists as well. Whether you prefer the most comprehensive roadmap to detail your plot or just the highlights so your muse has its say, Karen shows us an effective way to keep one's story on track, saving months of time and preventing tossed pages.

    ~ Donnell Ann Bell ~
    Award Winning Author

    One of the most valuable seminars I've attended. Whether you're a beginning writer or a seasoned professional, a plotter or a panster, this workshop is for you. Karen shows you how to plot your book to avoid those dreaded dead ends or the constant rewriting that often comes when you don't plan ahead. And yet this method doesn't stifle your creative muse by trying to plot out every scene in advance. I've attended numerous workshops and this was one of the very best!

    ~ Robin Searle ~
    Award Winning Author

    The "W" plotting method is logical, fast, and inspiring."

    ~ Janie Van Der Schouw, Published Author ~

    Karen Docter's THE "W" PLOT helped me, a pantser, really make the most of my plotting time. I was able to streamline my thoughts, come up with a plan and synopsis, and stimulate my creativity. The "W" is a straightforward, simple, and concise way to plot your books. I won't plot again without it!

    ~ Renee Hagar ~
    Contest Finalist & Workshop Presenter

    When I finished writing my third book, I had only 130 pages. At that time, I was lucky to attend Karen Docter's "W" workshop. I am a pantser and enjoy letting my characters write the story, but I needed more. After I successfully used the method, I was able to find my story weaknesses and expand it to a full-length novel. Now, I use the "W" at the beginning of the story. I still let my characters write the story, but now I know where they're going. Don't skip this step and end up with only 130 pages like I did. It's also easy to brainstorm points of the "W" with your critique group. It will enrich your story and up the conflict. Karen's made the method very simple for anyone to use.

    ~ Louise Suit ~
    "Panster" Author

    Karen Docter's "W" workshop was a true eye-opener for me. Plotting, for me, seemed to curb both my enthusiasm and my creativity, but seeing the simplicity of the "W" in action changed the ease with which I now plot. It also is a fantastic check on your work once you are done. Definitely worth the time!

    ~ Kally Jo Surbeck ~
    Award Winning Published Author

    Anyone who has ever wanted to tell a story and is dying to get it down on paper will find guidance in The "W" Plot. The plotting technique is clear, immediate and relevant to help get the writer from that first blank page to finally being able to write "The End."

    ~ Mary Webster, Author ~

    I highly recommend Karen's presentation of the "W" plotting system as a planning technique. This system can be used by new writers as well as by authors with more experience. It is used to plot the arc of each character so that their stories are intricately interwoven. It can also be used to find the flaws in a completed work. Each character's part of the plot has the peaks and valleys it takes to provide an exciting story and to reach the character's story goal, thus eliminating the sagging middle of the book and other problems writers encounter. I find it works well for stories of any type. The system works as presented or can be used in addition to other techniques the writer finds most comfortable in planning their work in progress. Carrying the "W" points into the diagram also lends itself to ease in creating a comprehensive synopsis.

    ~ Grace Larralde, "Plotting" Author ~

    My first autographing!
    CRW 2007 Romancing the Rockies Conference