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Stories and storytellers are the very fabric of our society. Margo Bates has developed four hands-on workshops for writers: Research Strategies for Writing Fiction and Non-Fiction, It's All About YOU - Marketing yourself and your work, What a Character! Humour Writing and Telling Family Stories Through Writing Cookbooks.

Research Strategies for Writing Fiction and Non-Fiction 

Margo Bates writes humorous accounts of life in Canada's Pacific Northwest. She does extensive research on local events and the time period of her stories in order to bring history alive, and keep her readers wanting to find out what happens next.

By using mind mapping, Margo shows participants how to develop their ideas, characters, storyline and story outcome based on research.

Topics and examples used in the workshop

It’s all about YOU– Marketing yourself and your work

As a publicist, Margo Bates wrote about and told other people’s stories, including what made them experts and why the public should learn more about the people, their product, and their businesses. It wasn’t the same when it came to her writing. Margo felt uncomfortable telling her story. She was uncertain what to say about her writing skills and style, and hesitant to share more details about her charming, eccentric and funny characters.

One day a friend said, “How can you expect people to buy your stories if you don’t talk about your craft and your experience? You know yourself as a writer. You know your characters best. You know your story inside-out. Who will buy, read, sell and talk about your work? They need to believe in you the author, as much as your stories.”

It didn’t take Margo long to develop a simple strategy to create a marketing plan suitable for writers, including herself.

The result? Margo’s workshop: It’s all about YOU – Marketing yourself and your work. Participants in this hands-on workshop get to develop their own marketing timeline and action plan. Topics include you and your story, research, market evaluation, and timing, as well as tips for monitoring the plan, and recommendations on how and when to measure the outcome.

What A Character!  Humor Writing Workshop

Stories and storytellers are the very fabric of our culture.  We learn about history, society, and people's experiences through their stories. Writing humor is an art. Characters aren't always funny. Stories are often serious. It's the way a character reacts to a situation that can be humorous.

Workshop participants analyze the story of Nana Noonan and her granddaughter Maggie Mulvaney, the main characters in P.S. Don't Tell Your Mother by Margo Bates.

Topics and examples used in the workshop

By the end of the workshop, we bet you'll agree on one thing.  That Nana Noonan: What a Character!

Telling Family Stories Through Writing Cookbooks

Food reminds us of special occasions, family traditions, and customs.  Meals shared with loved ones make for precious memories, and often the best stories come out of a family dinner.

As an author — and a cook — Margo Bates reads from her books P.S. Don't Tell Your Mother and Favorite Recipes from Marge's Diner ... hundreds served.  She offers a treasure trove of family memories, recipes and humorous anecdotes, including how the Telkwa Hall Rum Punch got its name.

E-Mail info@margobates.com or telephone 604-788-9501 for more information, or to inquire about upcoming workshops in your area.



Pitching Your Story - Wed Jan 10 at Canadian Authors-Metro Vancouver

How do you balance the need to convey the essence of a story with the need to avoid bogging down in detail? Margo will show writers how to make the most of a ten-minute pitch session. read more...

TWS Community Workshops: Research for Fiction and Non-Fiction with Margo Bates

SFU The Writer's Studio Community Workshop: Research for Fiction and Non-Fiction. Location: SFU Vancouver Campus, Harbour Centre Date and Time: Sat Jan 13, 2018 from 10 am to 1 pm Cost: $30 read more...

Workshops & Speaking Engagements

Margo speaks to groups and students on a variety of topics. She's developed these workshops for authors: It's All About YOU - Marketing yourself and your work, Research - The key to writing fiction and non-fiction. What a Character! Humour Writing and Sto read more...

Book Clubs

Margo speaks to Book Clubs in person or via Skype. read more...

Review on PS Don't Tell Your Mother by Kathleen Schmitt

Anyone ... gets the real picture [of life in a small town] in this story of the petty quarrels, competitions, and surprising human tenderness that reveal the way life flows with lots of ripples in Telkwa BC. ... Fun and easy to read ... read more...

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