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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

Four Sundays, October 2-23, 6:00-7:15 PM
Plotting Your Mystery
Book Passage
51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925
Of the three subgenres in the Mystery-Crime field, the most cerebral—and thus the most dependent on the cause-and-effect development of plot—is the detective/mystery subgenre. In this 4-week seminar, David will guide students through the various elements of the mystery story: the unique detective (and his/her will to justice), the "informative" victim, the unexpected killer, the puzzling murder. He will also address the various methods for staging the conflict and building the plot: working backwards in time from the murder, identifying the hierarchy of suspects and eliminating them one by one, the escalating chain of reveals leading to solution of the crime and apprehension of the killer.

The class will also explore the unique requirements of various sub-subgenres—e.g., hard-boiled, cozy, amateur sleuth—and hybrids such as medical thriller, legal thriller, etc., with special attention to the specific demands of mystery stories students themselves hope to write.

To register, go 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

November 8-December 6
In this class, students will explore how to bring real human depth and complexity to their characters by conceiving backstories through life-altering scenes, rather than lifeless information. They will learn how to move beyond role—protagonist, opponent, sidekick, conscience figure, love interest, etc.—to the personal characteristics that make fulfillment of that role not just possible, but necessary. They will also learn to identify the key backstory issues that will generate the story questions crucial to a compelling narrative arc.
For more information or to register, go here.

November 14-19
Wake Up and Write—Writer's Retreat Workshop
St. Rafael's Center
Haverford, PA
David will be joining a stellar group of instructors in this week-long intensive series of lectures and workshops. On two evenings, David will give his seminar on Deconstructing Chinatown, analyzing the film scene-by-scene to explore character, plot, symbol system, four-corner conflict, and more.
To learn more, go here.
To register, go here.

"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."



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