Marsha Skrypuch is honoured to have her picture book included in an exhibition in Bologna, Italy on the occasion of Pope Francis’ planned visit to the city. The 200 chosen books have been arranged on nine thematic tree-like structures. Adrift at Sea has been included on the tree about Migrants. Here are photos of the exhibit:
Writers’ Union Member. 2018 Silver Birch nominee for Clutch. Writing for Children Competition winner. Heather’s rates are $250 for one session, $450 for two, $650 for three, $800 for four/full day (may be shared with a neighbouring school). $150 for a virtual visit. HST applies. No travel costs within Toronto.
Clutch has been called “powerful, moving, and wonderful” by Kirkus and a “superb story” by Quill & Quire. A veteran journalist who is passionate about children’s literature, Heather writes about books for leading publications, volunteers with the Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators, and Performers (CANSCAIP), and works with children’s bookstore Mabel’s Fables. In her presentations, she aims to entertain and educate, leaving the audience interested in writing fiction and non-fiction, as well as looking into their own history for inspiration.
Set in the heart of Montreal’s impoverished Plateau neighbourhood in 1946, Clutch follows 12-year-old Joey Grosser, who vows to make money any way he can after his father dies and leaves the family with nothing more than a money-losing corner grocery store. But when he turns to the wrong man for help, Joey may lose more than just the opportunity of a lifetime to see Jackie Robinson play ball. Clutch explores ideas around family, friendship, poverty, racism, dreams and disillusionment, and of course baseball.
Heather engages students with a fun and interactive presentation. She starts by discussing the pressure to succeed – how it affects the lives of her characters, herself, and her audience. She shares the rather odd way she came to be a writer (both journalist and novelist), how she was inspired to write Clutch by delving into family history, and the lengthy process to becoming a published author. She also touches on the basic elements of a story, how to give it life through research, and why historical fiction is so important.
Presentations are one hour with question period and suitable for Grade 3 and up. They can be adapted to audience and interest; possible topics as related to Clutch include 20th-century art history, baseball history and Jewish immigration to Canada.
Workshops are available for 16 or so participants.
Page one, line one: Students will listen to a few examples to learn the basics of crafting the all-important first line, first paragraph, and first chapter, and then write their own.
Ready, set, research: Students will learn about the research process, including primary vs. secondary sources, fact vs. fake news, where to look, and how to pull it all together.
All the news: Students will learn about different types of articles and structure, and will write their own journalistic work.
Getting down to business: After discussing the 10 business basics Joey follows in Clutch, students will work on a business idea and marketing plan.
Customized topic: Heather can tailor a workshop to your needs and audience, including adults and educators. Please contact her for more details.
Acclaimed author and illustrator, Celia Godkin, will be in the GTA the last week in November. Celia’s books describe the complex relationships between animals and their environment in a way that’s accessible to the picture book audience. She would be delighted to visit your school to read and show illustrations from one of her books. Schools that sign up for more than one reading on the same day will receive a free book.
Janet Wilson will be in the Sudbury area on November 22nd & 23rd. She is offering a flat fee for mileage of $25–a savings of almost $400. Check out her ABS page for details on her inspiring presentations about child heroes of social, environmental, and indigenous justice.
The Elora Centre for the Arts will be hosting school visits on October 12 and 13 with author / illustrator Elly MacKay in conjunction with a solo exhibition of her work.
Elly’s presentations are a lot of fun and very hands-on. She has a Bachelor of Education and loves teaching all ages.
With presentations for K – Grade 5, Elly will design her presentation to suit the size and age of the group. Her storytelling and her unique way of creating illustrations will inspire students. Elly has written and illustrated several books, such as If You Hold A Seed and Butterfly Park and has illustrated several others. In a starred review of Waltz of the Snowflakes, Kirkus wrote, “This wordless tale, told entirely in expressive, graphic format, is a fresh and wonderful addition to the crowded Nutcracker shelves. In MacKay’s trademark cut-paper dioramas children can imagine themselves seated in the theater and dancing on the stage.”
Elly makes her illustrations by setting up layers of paper, lighting the scenes and photographing them. Each group will have an opportunity to see her miniature theatre and build a scene together.
In this presentation, Elly will help children build their visual literacy skills, sequencing and narration through exploring her wordless picture book, Waltz of the Snowflakes. With larger groups, materials are left for teachers for an extension activity. A beautiful print of the group illustration is later sent to the school or library as a keepsake.
Elly requires a small table, outlet, laptop and projector.
There will be a discount of $100 per school or $50 per session from Elly’s usual rate, to cover student transportation to the gallery).
Lark & the Diamond Caper is on the 49th Shelf’s Most Anticipated Books for Fall, and Kirkus reviews said, “Deen’s heroine reflects an underrepresented reader group and is as successful as any other lead character in early chapter books…Lark’s sparkly presence on the chapter-book shelves will be welcomed by many.”
Malaika is back too. The first time we heard from our young heroine in Malaika’s Costume, it was the first Carnival time since Mummy went to work in Canada. Her grandmother and she had to figure out how she might be a part of the Kiddie Carnival parade. Now, Malaika joins us in Malaika’s Winter Carnival with a new family and a new setting. Will Malaika be able to do Carnival? You can now get your copy of Malaika’s Winter Carnival online and in stores today (September 1st), written by Nadia L. Hohn, illustrated by Irene Luxbacher, and published by Groundwood Books.
Consider saving this newsletter for future reference. With our new mailing schedule you won’t be getting another one until October.
Over the summer, we’ve made some big changes.
Explore our revamped website. There’s an alphabetical snippet view of all our authors here. We have a Youtube video library with book trailers, author interviews and more. We’ve got a dedicated index tab for French presenters, illustrators and more, plus a full-site google search bar.
New Map Feature!
Our map has always shown to indicate approximately where our presenters live. Click on the + sign at the right side of the map to get a detailed view of a particular area.This is a great tool for estimating travel costs and also discovering local authors.
Now you’ll also see green V’s to indicate out of GTA bookings. Hover your mouse over a green V and you’ll see when you may be able to save on travel costs or share a day by booking an author while they’re already in your area!
The most stringent selection process in Canada
Here’s more information about that. This means you can book one of our presenters with confidence.
Our members can promote literacy and a love of reading as well as support curriculum objectives.Over the summer, we’ve added one more condition of membership: Vulnerable Sector Screening (VSS) . Every single member on our website as of Sept 1 has an up-to-date VSS.
Request for Collaboration
Our mission is to provide you with a reliable way of booking qualified and engaging presenters for the student audience. We ask that you help us do our job in the following ways:
1. Collaborate with us. Please book our authors through the email contact forms at the bottom of each presenter page. Our members pay us a small fee per booking (you pay us nothing) but if you use our service and then book directly, we receive nothing for the effort and expense we’ve put into providing it. We rely on the honour system.
2. Collaborate with your colleagues. If you are booking one of our presenters, ask nearby colleagues if they’d like to share the day or the tour with you. There are significant cost savings for you when you work together. As an example, an author may charge $600 plus travel for a half day (two sessions), but $1000 for a full day. If you and a colleague book together, you each save $100 and half the travel costs. As well, we can advise you on subsidies, reducing the cost even more. When you share our information, everyone wins.
3. Collaborate with your association or school board. Did you know that we host regional ABS-School Library meet and greets at no charge? You provide the venue, the audience and coffee (maybe some chocolate too??) and we’ll bring the authors and the books. Here’s a write up of one such event from last year. We would LOVE to do a similar event with YOU!
ABS is the booking agent for The Forest of Reading®. We are also partnered with the TDSB (under Amdox Co Ltd/Authors’ Booking Service).
Is YOUR Board or organization Interested in working with ABS as a partner too? Let’s talk.
News feed updated regularly!
Bookmark our website and check it often. Our news feed, Coming to the GTA and Deals are all index tabs on the main page and they’re updated several times a week.
Browse our menu or use our search bar to find just the right presenter. If you need suggestions or assistance, please ask us. We love to help – email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Red Maple award-winner Vicki Grant will be available for bookings in the GTA November 28-30. Vicki’s latest YA rom/com novel, 36 QUESTIONS THAT CHANGED MY MIND ABOUT YOU, has been sold to twenty countries. She has fifteen other YA, Middle Grade and high/low books including award-winning Quid pro Quo, Not Suitable for Family Viewing and PIgboy. For more details on Vicki’s books and presentations, visit her info page here.
L. E. Carmichael is now an Ontario-based author! To celebrate, she will donate a copy of her award-winning Fuzzy Forensics: DNA Fingerprinting Gets Wild, to all junior highs that host her forensics presentation(s). Students at hosting schools can also order signed copies of Fuzzy Forensics at 50% off list price.
Silver Birch award winning BC author Robin Stevenson will be in Toronto January 31-Feb 4 2018. She will also be visiting her old hometown– Hamilton! Robin has 20 novels for all ages from grade 2 to grade 12, and
offers engaging presentations and inspiring creative writing workshops
tailored to each group’s needs and interests. Her novels include the 2014
Silver Birch Award winning Record Breaker, the middle-grade novel The
Summer We Saved the Bees, and a new YA mystery called Blood on the Beach
Click on the the link above for more information and to access Robin’s contact form.
Eric Zweig has eight new books out this fall, including seven for school children! Book him for a visit to your classroom or library and receive a free copy of the new and updated 2nd Edition of The Big Book of Hockey for Kids.
Marty Chan brings his signature brand of comedic storytelling, stage magic, writing games, and improv to Ontario in May 2018. His latest series, Keepers of the Vault, engages reluctant readers who love to be scared, and he may share a terrifying tale or two of his own.
White Pine Award winning author Don Aker’s fall tour is full, but, as they say, “He’ll be back.” Click on his name and use the contact form on his page to let him know you’d like to be notified when he plans his next visit. Full days can be shared between neighbouring schools. And while you’re here, check out this interview by students from Heritage Regional High in Saint-Hubert, Quebec:
Bernice Hune. Toronto. Storytellers of Canada. 金山Gold Mountain Stories. Traditional Asian folklore & Canada’s immigrant history (FDK – 12). Per session, 80-100 students. Three Sessions $625 + travel from Toronto. Continue reading Bernice Hune (Toronto)