Author Visits Part Two – Types of Presentations

Many authors who conduct school visits on a long-term basis have a well organized set of presentations, workshops and other material. These might be related to their own books, but also to topics such as editing and revision, for example. Authors might talk about where they get their inspiration, character development or just how a book comes together, and whenever possible they leave time for questions from the students.

In addition to the subject matter of my own books, I cover such topics as where ideas come from, story structure, editing and revision, character development, time travel stories, the superhero genre, history and research and more. I’ll present to up to a hundred students at a time, although the smaller the audience the more participation from children, as a rule. I also conduct workshops with smaller groups or individual classes. A list of some of the presentations I offer can be found here, but I’m always happy to discuss matters with teachers to design sessions to best serve the needs of their students.

An important thing to consider when deciding to host an author visit is what type of presentation you’re looking for. There are usually numerous types to choose from and all authors are different in this regard. Are you looking for an author who’ll just read to the children or only be there to answer questions from the students, either about their book or about writing in general? Perhaps there’s an aspect   of the school curriculum that you’d like to emphasize and the author’s books are related to that in some way? Is there a project the students have been involved in to which the author can contribute, either by assisting them in getting started or in bringing it to a satisfactory conclusion?

Are you looking for workshops, in which the students do some writing or would you only prefer that they listen to a presentation? Are there particular general topics on writing, rather than those related to the subject matter of the books, that you’d like the author to focus on? Will the author to work with small groups in classrooms or in the library or with a hundred or more students in the school gym? How long would you want the sessions to be, to fit in with the regular schedule of the school day? Would you like the author to actually teach the students something or simply be a special guest that inspires them?

These are all important things to consider when planning an author visit and ensuring that it all goes smoothly.

I offer presentations, readings, author in residence programs and conduct workshops for children at schools and libraries. Please contact me directly for details of fees and availability.


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