Stemp, Heather (North Bay, Ontario)

Writer’s Union Member. English. Historical Fiction In-person

Rates: $225. for one session, $400. for two sessions in the same school

Virtual Rates: $150. for one session, $125. for each additional session in the same school.

Sessions: 60 minutes (virtual visits only, at this time)

Heather is a retired teacher, mother, and grandmother. All these roles have made her a dedicated supporter of young readers through her writing, classroom visits, and community events.

Her first book, Amelia and Me, is a middle grade historical fiction, which was nominated for the 2015 Red Cedar Award. Her second book, Under Amelia’s Wing, has been nominated for the 2021 Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People and the 2021 Red Maple Award (YA).

After Heather retired, she began writing her family history. She found that the Ross’s of Harbour Grace, Newfoundland were involved in early transatlantic aviation. Then Amelia Earhart arrived in 1932 to make her own transatlantic flight. That’s when Heather’s family history turned into her first book, Amelia and Me. Her second book, Under Amelia’s Wing, continues her Aunt Ginny’s adventures with Amelia in the newly-developing field of female pilots.

Presentations

Heather collaborates with teachers and/or librarians to customize visits to meet the students’ interests and the teachers’ curriculum requirements.  

Here are a few suggestions for virtual classroom visits:

Invite Amelia Earhart into Your Classroom

(She will arrive in a full flying outfit, if desired)

Interview Amelia or ask her to describe:

  • her time in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland before her flight- the secrecy, the  other female pilots trying to beat her across the Atlantic, and those who helped her
  • her actual flight- the problems, how she solved them, where she landed, her “staged” reception, and the world’s reaction

Other characters from, Amelia and Me, could be used in a similar manner. For example:

  • interview Ginny Ross, the main character, or ask her to tell you about growing up in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland and how difficult it was to follow her dream of becoming a pilot.
  • interview Joseph Ross, Ginny’s grandfather, or ask him to describe the depression in Newfoundland in 1932 and how it affected store owners like him
  • interview Rose Archibald (Ginny’s aunt) or ask her to tell you about the role of women in 1932
  • interview Heather Stemp, the author, or ask her to describe how family stories can be turned into books, the writing process, the editing process, or why people write books

A similar approach can be used to explore Heather’s second book, Under Amelia’s Wing, which is set at Purdue University in 1936. Ginny Ross is enrolled there as a mechanical engineering student. Amelia Earhart is there as a part-time career counselor for women and aviation advisor. Characters from the book can be interviewed or asked to describe certain aspects of the story. This book is for young adults, grades seven and eight. The use of costumes with this age group can be discussed with the teacher before Heather arrives.

Curriculum connections are numerous in these STEM friendly historical novels so hands-on activities can be included in different content areas. The interests of the teacher and the students will define the visit.

Historical black and white photos, videos, and maps can be used, if desired.

Information on audience size limits, writing workshops, set-up requirements.

Virtual visits only, at this time. Best with one or two classes to allow Heather to interact with students. Larger groups negotiable.

Contact Heather to book a visit:

    Nanua, Sarena and Sasha (Mississauga, ON)

    Presentation language: English. Grades 6-8 or 9-12. Combined rates: $250+HST for one session, $450 for two, $675 for three, $900 for a full day (four sessions). Plus a travel fee of $0.50/km if outside the Greater Toronto Area. Combined rates for virtual visits: $200+HST for one session, $300 for two.

    Sarena and Sasha Nanua are twin sisters living in Ontario, Canada. Born on Diwali ten minutes apart from each other, they grew up loving stories about twins and magic, and began writing books together when they were nine years old. They are graduates of the English and Professional Writing programs at the University of Toronto and are the authors of The Pendant Trilogy and the Ria and Rani duology. 

    Sarena and Sasha offer presentations on their writing journey, including how they began writing together at the age of nine, how they self-published as teenagers and then got a literary agent, and how they traditionally published their book Sisters of the Snake with HarperCollins. They also offer workshops on the publishing process and creative writing. Workshops can be tailored to grade level and can cover topics such as:

    • novel writing
    • elements of a story
    • best practices for revision/editing

    One session can include anywhere from 2-3 classes (20-30 students per class). Workshops can be done one class at a time, but also allow for smaller group sessions with each of us/one-on-one experiences in-person. Visual equipment such as power-point required for presentations and workshops. Bottled water would be appreciated.

    Contact Sarena and Sasha to book a visit:

      Sherrard, Valerie (Miramichi NB)

      Valerie Sherrard

      GG nominated, award-winning author.

      Virtual Visit: $225.00 for a 60 minute presentation.

      In school visits: $300 for a single presentation or $550 for two at one location. Full day workshop 700.00.  Expenses are included in all fees. For in-school visit dates — please contact Valerie and she will let you know when she plans to be in Ontario.

      Valerie is an experienced presenter (in-person and virtual visits) who uses humour and an interactive style to engage her audience. Feedback from her school and library visits has been enthusiastic.

      Birdspell Corbin Hayes is used to being alone. His mom’s illness means lost jobs, constant moves, new schools and friendships that never get to grow. So, when a classmate offers Corbin the talking bird she can no longer keep, he sees a chance to fill the gap in his life. But when things begin to spiral out of control, Corbin can no longer cope. At his lowest moment, he’s forced to do the one thing he fears the most. Young Adult.

      Finding Avalon  Avalon Monday doesn’t mind telling schoolmates that her mother ran off with a guy she met on the internet. After all, that’s way less embarrassing than the truth. But when the past collides with the present, exposing her secret and threatening to leave her new life in ruins, Avalon discovers there are some things you can never truly leave behind.

      Cooper Clark and the Dragon Lady  (Chapter Book) Desperate measures are called for when a boy is secretly afraid of dragons, but his new babysitter is rumoured to have a dragon in her basement!

      Presentations: I will present to grades 1 – 9. A signed bookmark or postcard will be provided for each student at all in-person presentations.

      Grades 1 – 3: There’s a COW Under My Bed! or Down Here! Fun and interactive talk about expressions and language, and students’ own creative abilities. Reading with audience participation. I end with a short Q & A. For these grades you may book two half hour presentations in the place of a single 60 minute session if you prefer.

      Middle Grades: Engaging interactive presentation on literacy, with or without issue-based segments depending on the book being presented. I end with a short reading and about 10 minutes for Q & A.

      Young Adult: Engaging and interactive presentation on literacy, believing in oneself and a variety of writing or issue related topics, depending on the requested focus. I end with a short reading and about 10 minutes for Q & A.

      Workshop for grades 6 and up: A Story’s Voice. This full day workshop is designed to help young people develop distinctive voices in their writing by examining the way character, setting, perspective, dialogue, tense etc. impact in telling a story. Writing exercises will demonstrate how each of these support a story in different ways, and help them to recognize which components will work best for their stories. Limited to 15 participants. Available virtually – contact to discuss a suitable arrangement.

      I am flexible on audience size but in my experience, smaller in-person groups result in the greatest benefit to students. I am comfortable in all settings, including classroom, library, auditorium or gymnasium.

      A sound system may be necessary depending on audience size, acoustics and the number of presentations booked.

      Contact Valerie:

        Dowding, Philippa (Toronto)

        Writers’ Union Member. CANSCAIP member. Winner of the Governor General’s Literary Award 2021 (FIREFLY) Fiction writer. JK to 8.

        Philippa’s virtual online rate is $350 per 55-minute session. Her in-person rate is: one session (1 hour) $450, 2-sessions (2 hours) $750, and 3-sessions (3 hours) $850. If required, rate will also include additional travel expenses outside GTA (for example, GO Bus and GO Train).

        Philippa is an award-winning children’s author, a poet, musician and copywriter. She has won magazine awards for Macleans, Chatelaine, Today’s Parent, Canada’s History and more.
        Her children’s books have been nominated for numerous literary awards, including the OLA Red Maple, Silver Birch and Silver Birch Express, Red Cedar, Diamond Willow and Hackamatack awards. She won the OLA Silver Birch Express Honour Book award in 2017, for Myles and the Monster Outside.

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