Author Visits/Appearances

Yes, I do school visits! I truly love what I do and enjoy sharing my writing experiences. As a former teacher, I know how important it is to engage an audience and hold their attention. I do programs for all ages. My programs incorporate audience participation and activities. My first book, THERE WAS AN OLD DRAGON WHO SWALLOWED A KNIGHT, was released August 4, 2015 from Random House Books for Young Readers. My second book, A COOKED-UP FAIRY TALE is coming from Random House in 2017.

Praise for THERE WAS AN OLD DRAGON WHO SWALLOWED A KNIGHT

Dragon Cover High Res copy
No matter how many swallowed-fly titles you own, this one belongs on your shelf too. — Kirkus

The author has used a broad range of words—savory, shady, fattens, tassel, guzzled, bloat, quote, perchance, amass, and billow. These will add depth to the young listener’s vocabulary. — School Library Journal

*Sunshine State Young Readers Award Jr. List 2015-2016

*Washington Children’s Choice Picture Book Award Nominee 2017

*Named Best in Rhyme 2015 in conjunction with the Rhyming Picture Book Revolution Conference

*THERE WAS AN OLD DRAGON WHO SWALLOWED A KNIGHT will be included in Scholastic Reading Clubs starting in February of 2017 and in Scholastic Book Fairs in fall of 2017.

*I’m thrilled that THERE WAS AN OLD DRAGON WHO SWALLOWED A KNIGHT will be published in the UK in December of 2016. The illustrator, Ben Mantle, resides in the UK, so that makes this especially exciting.

A Few Testimonials From School Visits

She was prepared and made the children aware of the writing process and how they too, could write and publish books. She took the time to answer the children’s questions about writing and the process of getting a book published. 
Holly Hamilton, Reading Recovery Teacher, Adkins Elementary


Her energy level was good, not too much and not too little. She had great interaction with the students. You could definitely tell she had been in education before.
Jamie Gandy, Reading Recovery/Early Intervention, McNair Elementary

She touched on things that I know the students are working on in their classrooms, which definitely helped reinforce certain writing skills and parts of the process.
Kim Krutka, Librarian, Blanton Elementary

Our 5th graders just had the pleasure of enjoying a wonderful poetry presentation by Mrs. Klostermann. Her book (pictured above) will be published in August 2015.  Her 26 years of teaching experience was apparent during her presentation. She was an engaging speaker that shared her writing process and poetry with the children. I cannot wait to have her back this fall to hear all about her new book.  

Lena Smallwood, Elementary Librarian

Your visit to our campus was a great success.  The kids loved it, and are still talking to me about the book!  You involved the students in the telling of the story, making it fun for everyone. You spoke with our kids on their level, keeping their attention throughout the presentation. The students learned about writing stories.  Even our teachers learned new things.  We look forward to having you return in the future!
Suzie Haden, Elementary Librarian

The 2nd Grade teachers were all very pleased with your presentation. I especially enjoyed the steps you showed us about how your book was written and published.
Tricia McDaniel, Elementary LRC Associate

Wonderful job!  Our students were engaged and excited.  I have heard from the teachers that several of their students have wanted to write stories of their own after you were here.
Roger Thomas, Elementary Principal

Our students loved Penny’s book and learning how she went about writing and producing her book.  The information about the writing process was just what our kids need to hear.  They also loved being able to rewrite the story using our school.  It was an excellent model showing how the students can rewrite other folktales.
Nancy Hartline, Elementary Librarian

I love that you showed students that even writers love to read other author’s books. It was a fantastic experience and my first graders enjoyed it immensely.
Tiffany Hibbard, Elementary LRC Associate

You can contact me HERE to inquire about a school visit.

About The Visit

During a full day visit, I will do three or four age-appropriate presentations. Presentations last from 30-45 minutes. I am happy to tweak length of presentations to fit your schedule.

What To Expect

(Activities will vary according to age level and your needs.)Screenshot 2015-04-29 16.41.05

  • Audience participation
  • Education
  • Entertainment
  • Writing Tips
  • Author inside scoop
  • Q & A
  • Writing Workshop
  • Poetry Workshop

Fees

**Payment is expected the day of the visit.

Sponsor’s expenses include my fee, transportation, lodging, and meals. Neighboring schools can arrange to share a day and split the cost.

  • One presentation: $350 (only offered within 30 miles of Abilene, TX)
    no mileage expense.
  • Two presentations: $450 (only offered within 60 miles of Abilene, TX)
    *plus mileage over 30 miles

Instead of partial day visits (one or two presentations) consider splitting the full-day fee with a nearby school to save money.

  • Full-day visits in-state $800 (three or four presentations)
    *plus travel expenses: mileage, lodging, meals (Within 30 miles of Abilene no mileage charge)
  • Full-day out-of-State Visits: $1200 (three or four presentations)
    *plus travel expenses: airfare, lodging, meals

Ways To Make a Visit More Affordable

The best way to make a visit more affordable is to share with another school. Listed below are a few of ways to share. Also, in this blog post, 21 Ways to Fund Author Visits, my booking agency, The Booking Biz, offers more ways to make visits affordable.

  1. Full-day visits with two schools sharing the travel expenses will make the visit more affordable.
  2. If a full-day visit for your school is not in your budget, consider sharing a full-day visit with another school. You will split travel costs and the cost of a full-day visit. Do keep in mind that this would mean only two assemblies at each school. That means the assemblies would be large and have a larger age-range. This isn’t ideal, but it can be done.
  3. Some schools have a book sale as a fundraiser. (more info in my Author Visit Information Packet.)

Equipment

I will need:

  • A microphone, preferably wireless, so I can move about.
  • A media cart with projector and 3 plug-ins.
  • I prefer to use my own Mac laptop. I will bring an adaptor for connecting to the projector. Plan B: I will have my PowerPoint on a flash drive to transfer to a school laptop.
  • Large screen for PowerPoint.
  • A tech person on hand, at least at first, to make sure everything is working properly.
  • I can also use a Smart Board. Again, have a tech person handy.
  • A table for my props.
  • At least one teacher in the room during each presentation.
  • Parking: Parking can sometimes be a challenge. Please let me know where I will be parking. It’s nice to be relatively close for unloading.

Authors talk about successful school visits HERE.

You can find more details about my visits in my Author Visit Information Packet found HERE.

If you have questions about my visits or would like to schedule a visit, please use this form to contact me. I look forward to hearing from you.