Plotting and planning your novel

Everything you need to know to tell a great story

Welcome to the pre-sale!

Are you writing a novel? Were you interested in my course Write Your Book Now — but felt it was too expensive?

This email is for you.

It’s offering you the option to buy my next course at a 50% discount.

Let me say this first: I think the best possible learning experience involves studying in a committed group with an active teacher offering live guidance and feedback.

That’s why I designed Write Your Book Now to be three months long and involve lots of coaching and guided group discussion.

Unfortunately, once I had made this decision, it meant that Write Your Book Now was never going to be cheap. There was simply no way I could offer so much of my own time.

But I well know that a $500 course is not for everyone.

In my day job, I’m a University instructor with a small child, a mortgage, and three dogs. Like many people, it’s a struggle sometimes for me to not just find time to keep writing, but also the money to repay credit cards, to deal with unexpected vet bills...

Often when I see expensive online courses out there, I think “I’m a resourceful person — if you have a cheaper, smaller version, just teaching the core skills — well, I could figure the rest out myself.”

So, with that in mind, I going to release, in early September, a “self-study” version of Write Your Book Now.

This course will take you a month, if you follow along the emailed prompts — but you’ll be able to complete it at your own pace, too, if you prefer.

You’ll end the sequence of short, simple assignments knowing how to plan, write, and finish your novel. You will complete the course with a detailed plan for your book, and a much better grasp on storytelling in general: you’ll have a fresh understanding of plot, character, scene structure, narration, and style.

Plus you will be able to construct a killer ending for your novel, a finale that your readers will love.

The best part is: this course is going to be cheaper!

Yet it will still be full of information and practical work for you to do. This smaller course teaches similar techniques to Write Your Book Now: it will simply get you less live & individual attention from me.

I’ll even include the more advanced lessons of the course, like the “plot funnels.”

This course is going to show you a step-by-step approach to scoping out, planning, and plotting your novel. It will show you how to move from the very beginning, from a vague dream of giving an author reading in a packed bookshop — to finishing an outline of your story that expertly executes the fundamentals of character, narration, and scene design.


When I launch this novel planning course, I will charge $197.

Read on to see what the course includes and whether you think it sounds right for you. I think when you read the course description, you’ll be impressed.

But I know that 197 dollars is still a lot, so I’m going to be offering the course as a pre-sale at 50% off.

So if you buy it with my special discount code, which expires at 10pm on the 1st of July, you will only need to spend $97.

(I’m keeping the pre-sale open until the first of July in case, like me, you get paid at the end of the month, and don’t have any extra money right now.)

Now, JUST TO BE ONE HUNDRED PERCENT CLEAR, this is literally a pre-sale. Although a large part of the course materials already exist in some rough form, I still need to put them all together and turn them into a great learning sequence.

If you buy the pre-sale, you will get the full course as soon as I finish it. This will be the end of August (at the latest).

If (for some strange reason) I can’t actually deliver the course, I’ll refund everyone who ordered the pre-sale.

And, if you order the pre-sale, get the full course in August, and decide you don’t like it, I’ll give you a full refund. No questions asked.

I’m not in the business of asking people to pay for things they don’t enjoy and don’t find useful.

So that’s the situation.

Interesting so far?

Here’s what the course includes.

Training videos and worksheets to help you scope out and plan — or revise — a great novel-length story.

- how to figure out the sort of novel you should really be writing.

- deciding on a special topic, experience, historical moment, or big picture idea for your novel.

- building a deep, story-focused setting that will impress and convince your reader.

- creating a well-rounded, dynamic, and plot-friendly protagonist.

- connecting your character’s deepest self to the big picture thing your novel is “about.”

- settling on the right narrative POVs for your novel, and working out when to use an omniscient narrator.

- applying the rule of “five ones” to your novel (limits are your friend).

- creating secondary characters by filling out a circle of “concern” for your protagonist.

- making readers care by developing a “focus of care” secondary character.

- writing the first ten pages with your protagonist already in motion.

- outlining the high-level plot: the three “turns” your character will take.

- inventing an unexpected, gripping, but still meaningful finale for your story.

- escalating the central part of the story through a simple, easy to execute plot-mechanism.

The course will also include bonus units on

- flowing, clear writing style

- snappy, appealing dialogue

- the crucial parts of a dramatic scene

Now, if you purchase the course in the pre-sale or in the first ever public launch, I will also give two group webinars, live, to discuss the materials with you live.

The course is designed to take a month to work through: one webinar will come at the start of the month, and the second towards the end.

In each live session, I will answer questions and apply the techniques of the course to your novel project.

Plus, if you take this planning course, then decide that you actually do want to buy Write Your Book Now in the future, I will happily give you a discount equal to the price you paid for this course.

Your Instructor

Daniel David Wallace
Daniel David Wallace

Daniel David Wallace is a writing coach, novelist, and editor.

Daniel recently completed a PhD in the craft of fiction. He spent those busy four years studying how to teach writers how to create better stories -- and with less stress.

Thousands of writers have signed up for his online courses on style, plotting, and finding one's voice. His novel-in-progress is represented by the literary agency Inkwell Management, and as the editor in chief of Burlesque Press, he has edited and published award-winning authors. With his brilliant wife, he created and co-hosted The Hands On Literary Festival, an annual conference in New Orleans for writers, readers, and scholars.

""Not all good writers are good teachers, but Daniel David Wallace (a talented, thoughtful writer himself) is a terrific instructor. Even when leading a class with multiple participants, he gives each student individualized attention.

His courses are chock full of useful information and his methodical narrative-building technique—his approach is specific and yet flexible enough to accommodate whatever genre you might be working in.

Daniel is attentive to plot, structure, character, and other high-level narrative elements, but you’ll appreciate his ability to zoom in closely on language and sentence-level concerns.

If you can take a class with him, do it!"

- Julia Brown

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts at the end of August. You can either follow along with the emailed prompts and the live teaching sessions, or you can go through the course materials at your own pace.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.
This is a pre-sale. How do I know you will deliver the course?
You can see all the testimonials from former students — I have successfully delivered several online courses in the past.

This course is not open for enrollment.