New Students of the “W”

The W Plot method has helped me immensely when I started working on a new book. I began with a vague idea of two characters but after working through step by step I’ve managed to develop a fully formed plot that I can work from. For a pantser, what I’ve got now is infinitely more useful and developed than anything else I’ve done before. And it was so easy! I found the colour method especially useful as I could see where a character had disappeared, which came down to really getting that goal down to its essential parts. Even though I’d merged and transcribed everything, there were still flabby bits but as I worked through the synopsis I made it much better. I am so pleased with the end result. Of course, now I’ve got to write it but I’m streaks ahead of where I’d normally be and feeling great about it.

~ Daniel de Lorne, Author ~


I am so grateful for the skill and generosity with her time that Karen devoted to the W Plot class recently completed. I found her insights valuable and I’ve kept all the lessons for ready reference as I continue to work on my own novel.

~ Ruchama Burrell, Auhor ~


Before I found the W Plotting Method my story ideas started out fine, but eventually drifted off into mayhem. Karen’s technique covers both characterization and plot, and if you do the work, you end up with a full synopsis and a story that’s exciting, fluid, logical and full of surprises for the reader, before you even begin writing. I couldn’t be more satisfied!

~ Julia Tagan, Author ~


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


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


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


Karen's Book Bench