Episodes

Episode Zero: Welcome to the Cabin
Storytime image

An introductory tour of the podcast. Episode Zero tells you about the purpose of the podcast, the origin of the Cabin Tales stories, the creative writing themes coming up this fall, upcoming guest authors, plus a submission call for the Halloween Special Episode. 20 minutes. All ages.

A complete transcript, shownotes, and links are available on the Episode 0 blog post.


Episode One: Things hide in the dark
An illustration of a sea monster seizing a man into the air.

A 40-minute episode all about setting, with a spooky opening story, “The Sacrifice.” Then comes creative writing commentary on building and showing a fictional setting, with excerpts from great books — Beowulf; The Scorpio Races; and The Incredible Journey — and interviews with great authors, Caroline Pignat; Lori Weber; and Tim Wynne-Jones. A final story prompt, “The drummer in the basement,” will get listeners writing their own tales. PG-13; a “fright-free” version is available for younger listeners.

Original and fright-free versions of this episode, plus full transcripts, shownotes, links, and guest author bios are available on the Episode 1 blog post.


Episode 1.5: Author Interviews about Setting
An illustration of two people talking .

An extension of episode one, with more excerpts from interviews with more authors. Featuring five authors for children and young adults: Karen Krossing, Jan Coates, Amanda West Lewis, Rachel Eugster, and Monique Polak, who talk about their favourite fictional settings, feared real-life settings, and advice to young writers on setting stories effectively. 40 minutes. All ages.

Audio, transcript, shownotes, and guest author bios are available on the Episode 1.5 blog post.


Episode 2: Nasty People meet Nasty Ends
illustration of woman

A “telling tales” format all about writing characters. With a spooky original story, “The Spot;” excerpts from Dracula, The Universe vs Alex Woods, and The Bad Beginning; interviews about monsters and other characters with Karen Krossing, Monique Polak, and Tim Wynne-Jones; and a final story prompt, “Swimmer’s Graveyard.” 50 minutes. PG-13. A fright-free version is also available.

Audio, transcripts, shownotes, and guest author bios are available on the Cabin Tales Episode 2 Blog Post.


Episode 2.5: Author Interviews about Character
Illustration of men talking

An extension of episode two, with more excerpts from interviews with more authors. Featured guests Caroline Pignat, Jan Coates, Rachel Eugster, Lori Weber, and Amanda West Lewis talk about their favourite fictional villains and protagonists, their deep connections to their characters, and recommended exercises for young writers who want to develop memorable fictional characters. 45 minutes. All ages.

Audio, transcripts, shownotes, and guest author bios are available on the Cabin Tales Episode 2.5 Blog Post.


Episode Three: Spooky Stories are all Around Us
A chipmunk illustration

A 50-minute episode answering the question, “Where do you get your ideas?” With an original spooky story about an insatiable animal; excerpts from All Quiet on the Western Front, The One and Only Ivan, and The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom; advice from guest authors Philippa DowdingAmelinda Berube, and Kari-Lynn Winters; and creative writing exercises and prompts.

Original and fright-free versions, plus transcripts, shownotes, links, and guest author bios are available on the Episode 3 Blog Post.


Episode 3.5: Author Interviews about Inspiration
illustration of men talking

An extension of episode three, with more excerpts from interviews with more authors. Guest authors Cary FaganWendy McLeod MacKnightRaquel RiveraIshta Mercurio, and Robin Stevenson answer the question, “Where do you get your best ideas?” Guests talk about using their real-life fears in their fictions and advise young writers on where to put their great ideas once they find them. 40 minutes. All ages.

Find a transcript, object-study template, and guest author bios on the Episode 3.5 Blog Post.


Episode 4: Bad Things Happen
A horrifying face

An episode about plotting stories. With an original spooky story about a girl alone in a house when bad things happen, and featuring excerpts from Harold and the Purple Crayon, “The Band-aid”, and Holes. Listen to commentary on classic plot structure, tiny plots, and ways to complicate plots with subplots and backstory. Plus advice from guest authors Robin Stevenson; Wendy McLeod MacKnight; and Amelinda Bérubé; and a plotting exercise and prompts. 

45 minutes. PG-13. Find audio, a transcript, a fright-free version, and links to excerpts and guest authors on the Episode 4 Blog Post.


Episode 4.5: Author Interviews about Plotting
interview image

An expansion of episode four, featuring interviews with more great Canadian authors for children and young adults. Guest authors Cary FaganPhilippa Dowding, Kari-Lynn Winters;  Raquel Rivera, and Ishta Mercurio talk about how they plot their stories, and offer advice to young writers who want to create more inviting plots.

40 minutes. All ages. Find audio, a transcript, and links to guest authors on the Episode 4.5 Blog Post.


Episode 5: Squirm
Fish fishing

A “telling tales” episode about building tension and making readers turn the page. Featuring an original story about two sisters on the water when things get tense. Plus commentary and excerpts from Lost Boy, Deltora Quest, and The Cat in the Hat. Featuring great advice from guest authors Lena Coakley, Sarah Raughley, and Don Cummer.

45 minutes. PG. Find audio, a transcript, and links to guest authors on the Episode 5 Blog Post.


Episode 5.5: Author Interviews about Tension
illustration of men talking

Interviews with Canadian children’s and YA authors on the subject of tension and how to make a reader turn the page. With five great guest authors: Kate InglisLisa DalrympleDavid McArthurJeff Szpirglas, and Marty Chan.

40 minutes. All ages. Find audio, a transcript, and links to guest authors on the Episode 5.5 Blog Post.


Special Episode X: Picture a Story
frightened woman

Interviews with five Canadian illustrators about creating narratives in words and pictures. Featuring guest author-illustrators Peggy CollinsKatherine BattersbyFarida Zaman, Christine Tripp, and Chris Jones

45 minutes. All ages. Shownotes, guest author bios, links, audio and a full transcript are available on the Episode X Blog Post.


Special Episode XX: Spooky Student Stories
engraving of a witch

The Halloween episode, featuring 5 spooky stories by students aged 11-17. Listen to tales of a terrifying musical awakening, a futuristic drug, a demonic yoga class, a pizza you don’t want to order, and a phone call you don’t want to answer. From young writers Jacob Tremblay, Prisha Mehta, Owen Fitzpatrick, Kayleigh Williams, and Sarah Ham.

45 minutes. PG. Let the kids listen in. Listen and learn on the Halloween Episode Blog Post.


Post-Halloween Special Episode: More Spooky Student Stories
A wood engraving of Hell

Halloween may be over, but the spooky stories are still going on! This Special Episode of Cabin Tales features four more student stories. Listen to tales about: a monster that demands sacrifice; a historic Halloween; teens in the deep woods; and a supernatural Air B&B. From young writers Aleina Wang, Olivia Beauchamp, Lexi-Jade McCowan, and Olivia Li.

45 minutes PG. Find audio, transcript, and show notes on the Post-Halloween Episode Blog Post.


Episode Six: Begin in the Darkness
darkness

An episode about how to begin a story, with guest authors Karen BassKate Inglis, and Chris Jones. Featuring an original story, great first lines from classic fiction, and suggested writing exercises.

40 minutes PG. Find original and fright-free versions, with audio, transcripts, and guest author bios, on the Episode 6 Blog Post.



Episode 6.5: Author Interviews about Beginnings
interview image

A “talking tales” episode — all interviews – about how to begin a story. With guest authors Frieda WishinskySarah RaughleyDon CummerDavid McArthur; and Wendy McLeod MacKnight, speaking about their favourite first lines, their advice to young writers on how to begin, and how they began to write professionally.

45 minutes. All ages. Find audio, guest author bios, and a full transcript on the Episode 6.5 Blog Post.


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