David combines 30 years of classroom and university speaking teaching, one-on-one mentoring, and over 20 years of publication history, including starred reviews and awards. As a working novelist and practicing teacher, he knows how to give your manuscript what it needs.
WRITING METHODS THAT WORK
The Sticky Note Plotting method has been used by dozens of writers to plot, plan, and revise novels, several of which have been published. The same methods will work for you and your novel, whether you’re starting from scratch or undertaking a substantial revision.
FOCUS ON STORY, NOT JUST STYLE
Plot + character = story, and it is a story that drives your reader in and makes your novel memorable and unputdownable. Everyone loves a beautifully written novel, but it is what happens to the characters--and the emotional connection we feel to them--that creates memories.
DEVELOP COMPLEX CHARACTERS
All stories begin and end with characters. Complex characters draw the reader in, hold them, engage them, and form connections with them. Learn about developing emotional arcs, character development, and building backstory for character motivation.
BUILD SCENES THAT TURN PAGES
The building block of any novel is the scene. Like the structure of a novel, the structure of the scene is complex and requires many moving parts--scene questions, character goals, building tension, and conflict.
LEARN HOW TO REVISE
Writing is revision. Anyone can write a terrible first draft, and most of us will, but it’s in revision that the real magic is made. Learn advanced techniques for revising your novel for plot, character, conflict, stakes, and emotional connections.
From Writers Who Have Used the Sticky Note Method
"I tend to *over-complicate* my stories. David’s sticky note method helps me identify when I have too many plot-lines going. Where I need to build. Where I need to scale back. It also allows me to track through-lines and make sure I’m connecting the dots. If synthesizing plot is a challenge for you, give Sticky Note Plotting a try."
"I remember David telling us, as he was teaching, that the beauty of the sticky notes is that you are opening all the mental file drawers, where writing an outline slams them shut. And that's what it was like for me. I had a blast working on it. Each idea built on the one before it, and suddenly I had a whole story. Were there things I wound up not using? Of course. But the path was there, and so each time I got lost I could look back at my sticky notes and find my way through the fog. I will never write another book without it. Thank you David!"
SARAH CLAWSON WILLIS
"I'm a proud plot and structure nerd and felt like I had a really good handle on the topic. However, there was so much buzz about David's sticky note method that I had to check it out. It's not an exaggeration to say it's changed my process completely. I used to rely on spreadsheets and outlines, but now I put it all up on the wall, easily able to move things around. Not only is the process more enjoyable (especially if you like office supplies!), it has simplified and shortened my planning significantly. Thank you, David!"
"First drafts can be gruesome. I hate plotting, but pantsing can feel like a series of dead ends. Sticky Note Plotting takes the pain out of drafting, provides a home for those "great ideas" that always hit before you know where to put them, and also serve as home office wall decor. I'm sort of obsessive about it now. Buy up stock in Post-its, then try Sticky Note plotting. You won't look back."
"Sticky note plotting flips your lit from the verbal to the visual. If you've always wished you could get an honest to goodness bird's eye view of your novel, here it is. The sticky note process helps me identify structural problems in my narrative, and illuminates better plot possibilities I might not have been able to see with me head in my pages. While some writers might need to sticky note at the beginning of their writing, I whip it out when I hit a road block, or when I need to see exactly what's going on in my book. An additional benefit to the process is the loss of preciousness about your work. In other words, it's easier to kill the darlings when you can identify exactly how they're gumming up the works."
"Sticky-note plotting gave me a way into writing a novel. I had a good sense of what scenes should do, but I had been stuck about 40 pages into every novel I started. David explained story structure in a way that made sense to me, and he helped me use scenes as a means of building to and from major story points. Above all, though sticky-note plotting is driven by character. The process helped me return to character again and again in ways that helped my plot grow organically. Within six months, I was able to draft a full novel, start to finish."
"David Gill’s method gives me an instant, tangible view of my work in progress, and the flexibility to see where things aren’t working and adjust."
PLOT + CHARACTERS = STORY
How to Plot Your Way to Books that Sell
Get One-on-One Story Coaching, Developmental Editing, and Manuscript Analysis for your novel
Basic and advanced ctechniques for creating characters and writing scenes that make readers turn the page
Recorded demonstrations of the Sticky Note Plotting method that you can watch again & again
Listen to Plotcasters, a podcast for writers and the stories they tell. We share our secret processes with you
Story Coaching Services
Every Book Is Different. So Is the Help It Needs.
STICKY NOTE PLOTTING
A ONE-ON-ONE ZOOM SESSION WITH DAVID TO PLOT OUT YOUR NOVEL THE STICKY NOTE WAY.