$350 for one-hour.
Includes an activity that can be built upon by the
classroom teacher and an introduction
on how I became an author.
Also offer free 20-minute Zoom Author Talks

Workshops

“Mr. McCann is friendly and immediately likeable. He has no difficulty collaborating with educators and other authors, he clearly enjoys meeting new people, and he interacts exceptionally well with youth.”

Deanna Brady
Principal, A.E. Perry Elementary
Chair, Young Authors’ Conference
Kamloops-Thompson School District

Map designed by a student

Mapmaking to Inspiration

Each workshop begins with a Power Point presentation of how I became an author. I talk about how being afraid of muppets shaped my fascination with mythology, and then how I became a storyteller through playing Dungeons and Dragons.

The next step is a discussion of my books and how I use strong characters as a basis to write and discover plot along the way.

Mythology plays an important part, whether I’m writing about werewolves or martial arts or zombies or history. Through maps and photos of real places, I create realistic make-believe places that I’m often asked where to find.

Lastly, I takes them through a writing exercise where students create maps. As they draw their maps in teams, students begin to discuss the possible stories that arise as they become inspired. This is followed by writing time and can be continued by the teacher as a class project.

What Teachers Say

“James has taken the time on several occasions to do author readings and writing workshops with our youth readers at Surrey Public Libraries.

His presentations are very energetic, professional, well-prepared, and tremendously engaging for our children and teens. He is able to convey his passion for reading, books, and writing.

He clearly motivates young people in all aspects of literacy and, essentially, makes literacy ‘cool’.

As a librarian who often sees boys move away from leisure reading as they grow older, I think it is notable that James provides an excellent male role model for reading and writing.”

Carmen Merrells, MLIS

Librarian, City Centre Branch

“Mr. McCann is friendly and immediately likeable. He has no difficulty collaborating with educators and other authors, he clearly enjoys meeting new people, and he interacts exceptionally well with youth.

Above all, his writing workshops are engaging, thoughtfully organised, and hands-on. Sometimes they are even gamified!

One of the teachers who supervised this workshop commented, ‘So many great writing ideas!’ When we dropped by to listen in for a bit, we could tell that Mr. McCann was prepared, encouraging, and responsive. A number of students volunteered that Mr. McCann’s workshop was one of their favourites.”

Deanna Brady

Kamloops-Thompson School District

Writing Interactive Fiction as a Game App

Do you have a computer lab? Why not put it to use teaching creative writing and computer coding at the same time! This creative writing workshop teaches students to program in Ink, a free open source program, to write interactive stories that can be transformed into game apps. 

This workshop combines basic computer programming skills with creative writing for a fun, interactive learning experience. Works best with grades 5+.

Writing Your Story Dungeons and Dragons-style

Whether your students write contemporary tales or fantasy epics, the popular game of Dungeons and Dragons can make you a better writer. See how modern writers have been influenced through creating characters, maps, and collaborative storytelling to work through tough plot points!

At the end of this workshop, your students will have the tools to say goodbye to writer’s block forever and get their novel written and polished.

Book me for a workshop now

Workshops book fast! Book me now for the 2023 school year.