david david


Praise from a distinguished former student:

"Your class was wonderful! I took away so much from our work together and I still refer to my notes. It was worth every minute I spent on the 405, and that's saying a lot—it was four hours every Monday night, two each way between class and home! I've ordered The Art of Character and will keep it close at hand as I work on novel #2."
   —Aline Ohanesian, author of Orhan's Inheritance (a #1 Indie Pick April 2015)

For more about Aline and her wonderful debut novel, listen to her interview with Lynn Neary on NPR's Weekend Edition.

David's lecture, "The Character of Crime," given at CraftFest in July, 2015, is available as an mp3 download through VW Tapes (along with recordings of all the other sessions and panels). CD format also available. To purchase David's lecture, go here.

See David's free, two-hour online video workshop (David's lecture begins at the 10:20 mark.)

2 0 1 6 SEMINARS

Sunday, May 1, 10 AM-4 PM
The Final Polish
Book Passage
51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925
You've finished and revised your manuscript and believe it's ready to send it out. But in today's competitive marketplace, you may get only one chance to impress agents and editors. In this workshop, David will review your first ten pages to determine: How unique is the voice? How compelling are the story questions? How engaging are the main characters? How high are the stakes? Manuscripts must be submitted by 4/23/16.

May 12-19
Writers Retreat Workshop
Oblate Retreat and Conference Center
San Antonio, TX
David will be joining Joe Lansdale, Les Edgerton, and others in this week-long retreat. David's courses will be on Friday and Saturday morning, May 13-14, on character development and plot creation, respectively. He'll also be doing one-on-one consultations with attendees.

July 7 - August 4
The Craft of Character
In this 4-week course, David will teach the key techniques for situating complex characters in compelling stories, and how to render them on the page.

    What This Class Covers:
  1. The Protagonist and Opponent: Crafting Conflict
    Nothing is more crucial in the creation of meaningful drama than understanding the textured, multi-layered contest between the protagonist and the opponent
  2. Secondary Characters: Creating a World
    The protagonist and opponent do not act alone; they act on behalf of values they prize and worlds they cherish--values and worlds embodied in secondary characters
  3. Point of View & Voice: An "I" on the World in Words
    Reader engagement depends on character empathy, and that requires strong point-of-view characters with a controlled, consistent perspective on the story. Language creates the bridge between those characters as envisioned in your mind and the ones on the page, and shaping language to reflect character is key to effective drama.
  4. Scenes & Dialog: Drama, not Description
    Characters reveal themselves far more in what they say and do than what they think or feel. The arena for action is the scene, and dialog provides a critical means of both forcing the action and externalizing inner life
Register here.

October 28
Writer's Digest Novel Writing Conference
Westin Bonaventure Hotel
404 S Figueroa St
Los Angeles, CA 90071
(213) 624-1000
David will be teaching two classes:
11:30 AM: The Machinery Of Desire: Using Your Characters' Innermost Desires to Drive Your Story
3:00 PM: The Character Of Crime: Creating the Character Web in Crime, Mystery/Detective And Thriller Fiction

"Just wanted to drop a note to say thanks for a terrific workshop. Your suggestions and insights were extremely helpful. I love your passion and appreciate that you love what you do. After leaving on Saturday, I felt that the chances of my book being published increased significantly.
Again, many thanks and best wishes for a joyful journey."
—Richard Rachlin, on The Outer Limits of Inner Life

Student/Client Praise

The following is a small sample of student and client appreciation in response to both classroom and online courses I've taught and manuscript critiques I've provided:

  • "I LOVED this class. The material was perfect—his lectures showed me how to look at things like arc and characterization in a whole new way—and the organization was right on the money. This is the best $500 I have ever spent."

  • "Awesome class. The material presented was perfect. Top-notch."

  • "The class touched my soul—Mr. Corbett is honest, authentic, and has a genuine passion for the process. He listened, remembered our individual pieces and asked probing and informed questions. The class was an experience of pure creativity."

  • "Hands down, the most enjoyable, beneficial course on writing I have ever taken, and I've taken many."

  • "I learned tips about forming characters that went untouched in conferences where I have paid a substantial registration/workshop fee and gone home disappointed."

  • "He brought inspiration AND instruction."

  • "Excellent thinker and teacher."



  top about david
the books
book doctor
on writing
readings and appearances

seminars and classes