Want to kick-start your students’ reading habits? Need to motivate a reluctant writer? Looking for a keynote or professional development session for your colleagues? Marty Chan offers a variety of engaging sessions that will have you laughing and learning. He shares the personal stories behind his novels to show students how their own lives can be springboards into great stories. He disguises writing concepts as interactive games that teach kids while they’re having fun. With over a quarter of a century of experience as a full-time writer, Marty breaks down the mystique of creative writing into practical ideas you can adopt and apply immediately.
Please click on any of the tabs below for specific information about Marty Chan’s presentations. For information about his fees, please contact Marty using the contact form on the website.
From the moment he began to speak, he enthralled us with details of his journey to become an author. His interactive presentation style and use of humour made his writing process come alive for the students, and murmurs of “I want to become a writer” could be heard rippling through the audience…pure gold to a teacher’s ears!
Marty told us a story of how his English teacher influenced his decision to become a writer. I truly feel that Marty has become that one person who sparked the interest in many of our students. Thank you for being a difference maker in the lives of our students.
Julie Van Huyse
Our Gr. 3 and 4’s loved his camping stories and especially Bigfoot and Frozen Brain. As one Grade 3 student put it “he was full of suspense and it made me sit on the edge of my seat”. Staff and students alike loved Marty’s fun, informative presentations. I highly recommend booking Marty for your school.
“Amazing presentation – very engaging and though-provoking. Excellent, memorable stories.”
“Excellent storyteller. Very engaging and funny.”
Grades 1 – 3: Marty talks about the inspiration behind his picture book, True Story, and reveals the process behind the book. He invites the kids to help him create a brand new story in an interactive demonstration of how his creative process works.
Grades 4 – 6: Marty shares the real-life origins behind his mystery novels and talks about how he came up with the ideas for his Barnabas Bigfoot series. With an interactive writing game, he emphasizes the importance of details in stories.
Grades 7 – 9: Marty reveals the inspiration for his Ehrich Weisz Chronicles, his YA series that features Harry Houdini and Nikola Tesla. He talks about the value of research and recreates some of Houdini’s sleights of hand to demonstrate the parallels between writing and magic tricks.
Grades 10 – 12: Drawing on his background in theatre, Marty talks about the origins behind his Mom, Dad, I’m Living with a White Girl and The Bone House. Through an interactive demonstration, he reveals how to create conflict in any piece of writing.
Students will learn to write a short-short suspense story drawing on their own experiences. In-class activities and games will inspire imagination, teach writing principles, and provide students with the tools to become better writers. As well, Marty will offer in-class feedback on writing. At the end of the week, the students will have completed a first draft of their stories. Each group (no more than 30 students) works with Marty in 4 one-hour workshops.
*** Note: Marty can also offer a residency for division 1 students. He will walk the students through the basics of putting a story together. Using their own stuffies as the main characters of the stories, the students will build a story from beginning to end. Each group (no more than 25 students per group) will meet Marty three times for 30 minutes per session. He does not do writing workshops for kindergarten, but can offer a 20-minute author visit
Frequently Asked Questions
How long is a presentation?
My author visits and writing workshops are about an hour long.
How many students can you talk to in one session?
For an author visit, I can speak to up to 150 students, but I prefer to separate the divisions so that I can tailor the presentations to each group. I do not include kindergarten kids in my sessions, but I am willing to talk to them for 20 minutes. My writing workshops are geared to smaller groups (under 30 kids).
What do you need for your presentation?
I need a table to set my books and props and access to a flip chart or whiteboard and markers. If I’m doing the presentation in a gym, I need a microphone, preferably a lapel mike or something that is hands free.
Can you do a residency for all our grades?
I have done full-school residencies in the past. They can range from one week to three weeks, depending on how many classes you have. For grade 4 and up, I recommend I see each group 4 times for an hour each session during the residency. For the younger students, I recommend 3 sessions of 45 minutes each. I do not do workshops for kindergarten, but I can talk to them for a single session of 20 minutes.
How can we prepare our students for your presentations?
The sessions work best when the students are familiar with one of my works. If you can have them read one of my novels that would be ideal. If that is not possible, have them read at least the first chapter of one of my books.
Can you travel to our community?
Yes, I have presented across Canada, and I am willing to travel if you cover my expenses. Please email me for the travel cost breakdown.
When can we book you?
I’m available throughout the school year. I recommend school visits in the fall and writing residencies after the Christmas break.
Will you do Skype presentations?
Yes, I can do Skype presentations for small groups.
What are your costs?
Please email me for my current rates.