Maheshwari, Priti (Cambridge, ON)

Priti Birla Maheshwari is an award-winning children’s author and teacher. She is the recipient of the 2023 CCBC and TD Grade One Book Giveaway, as well as many other awards for her debut picture book Chaiwala! (illustrated by Ashley Barron, published by OwlKids Books 2021).

Priti is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), and the Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators and Performers (CANSCAIP). She gives English and French language presentations and workshops for grades K-3 in the category of fiction.

In-person rates: $400 for 1 session, $650 for 2, $900 for 3 and $1100 for 4, + travel (.68 cents per kilometre, round-trip for SW ON).

Virtual Visits: $300 for one session, 45-60 minutes, $200 for each additional session on the same day.

Priti is an experienced educator and speaker who tailors each presentation to the group in front of her through fun interactive sessions. She can do up to four daily presentations in the same school. As the author of a picture book and an early reader chapter book series, Priti can offer a vast range of workshops for kindergarten to grade 3 students.

She will gladly collaborate with teachers and/or librarians to customize visits to meet the children’s interests and the teachers’ curriculum requirements. Students and staff have the option to order personalized, signed books which will be delivered to their school. Priti will provide ordering instructions.

In-person visits:

Priti begins with a PowerPoint presentation that immerses the students in the sounds and sights of India. This is followed by an interactive reading session and then an art activity where the students make personalized teacups.

Participatory Reading & Activities: Age level: K – grade 1; Duration 45-60 minutes. Best for up to 30 students for optimal engagement.

Priti introduces students to facts about India and a fun participatory reading session of Chaiwala! Priti also discusses idea generation and the inspiration for the story. This includes a small moment activity and an art activity.

Key concepts: diversity, arts

Key themes: curiosity, exploration, family and traditions, cultural appreciation

Explore a Book! Age level: Grades 1-3; Duration: 45-60 minutes. Appropriate for classroom visits.

Students will explore the picture book Chaiwala! through the lens of a reader, writer, and artist. They’ll discover how the author and illustrator work together to create a picture book, and how the world in which we live is interconnected with “small moments”. Students will do an activity on what makes a moment special and end with an art activity.

Key concepts: picture book creation, writing process

Key themes: curiosity, exploration

Levels: Grades 1-3

Equipment needs for in-person visits:

  • Laptop with PowerPoint – presentation is on a USB stick (or Priti can bring her own laptop if it can be connected to the school projector)
  • SmartBoard or digital projector and screen for presentation
  • Microphone if the space is larger than a classroom
  • Table to set materials
  • Chair or stool

For virtual visits, school Zoom account (or similar). Student supplies depend on the session which will be discussed before the visit. The teacher or librarian must be present for all presentations, virtual or in-person.

Contact Priti to book a visit:

    Frayne Sharon, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario

    Writers Union Member. Young Adult and Adult genres. $300 plus HST and travel ($0.50/km outside Niagara) for 1 session, $500 for 2, $700 for 3 and $900 for full day.

    Virtual Visits: $100-200 plus HST (depending on time required)

    Background: Sharon Frayne was born in St. Catharines, grew up on a Niagara farm and in Muskoka, and now divides her time between Niagara and Northern Ontario. She was a high school Visual Arts and English teacher, an Arts Department Head, and Elementary Principal. During her career, she worked with many special needs children, their families and teachers. She’s an award winning short story writer and novelist, whose contemporary tales include diverse characters, environmental issues, Canadian history and outdoor settings.  

    Public Speaking and Workshops: Sharon is a dynamic, engaging, experienced teacher and Principal who is comfortable leading small groups, individual classrooms or presenting in assemblies. She enjoys speaking to adult groups and book clubs. Presentations include visuals and are interactive, tailored to individual and group needs.

    Workshop Themes (samples, more are available and can be customized)

    How to Self-Edit (suitable for students in grades 4- 12. Meets Ontario Curriculum Guidelines)

    How to create amazing, realistic, empathetic characters (for short stories or novel length)

    Does Setting matter? It sure does – let’s do some world building to enhance your story.

    Seven Steps to writing a prize winning Short Story.

    What’s a plot line? How to develop one for a short story or novel.

    Who needs conflict? Your story does – here’s how to create some.

    For Better or for Worse – How does Social Media Affect Us?

    Materials Required for School Presentations:

    Classroom or Library setting preferred. Microphone (if acoustics are problematic), table for computer and materials, screen and data projector. Preference is for individual classrooms, or similar age/grade groups up to 100.

    Free Virtual Visits!

    15 minute virtual visits, with a short teacher/moderator led Q & A session are available to classes or clubs who are reading one of my books.  This works best with small groups.

    Writer in Residence option:

    This is a fantastic opportunity to develop a working relationship with a group over a pre-arranged time period. This could be writing workshops, feedback sessions, book discussions and can be arranged to suit interest and ability levels.

    Publications:

    Magazines and Newspapers: Eden Mills Writers Festival Chapter Publication (winning writers), CommuterLit, Agnes and True, The Ekphrastic Review, Uproar, The Local (NOTL Paper), The Lake Report (NOTL Paper), Stage of Life (USA online publication) and others

    Novels: The Sound of a Rainbow, (Latitude 46 Publishing),2023 (gr. 8 -12)

    Caught Between the Walls, (Bygones Press), 2016 (gr. 6 -12)

    Awards:

    Frayne’s short stories and poems have won in the South Simcoe Arts Festival, Eden Mills Writers Festival, the Northern Ontario Writer’s Workshop, the Banister Poetry Contest and Stratford Rotary Writing Contest. She won the Best Novel Award in the Muskoka Novel Marathon in 2019, 2020 and 2022. She’s been a frequent winner of the NOTL Rising Spirits Writing competition for both short stories and poetry. Her personal essay, ‘Stepping into a Lifetime’ was the USA national winner in the Stage of Life writing competition.

    She won the Halton District School Board’s Award of Distinction for Creativity in Education and was nominated for the Ontario Premier’s Award for Education.

    Associations: In addition to belonging to the Writer’s Union of Canada, she’s an NOTL Writer’s Circle board member, past president of the Niagara branch of the Canadian Author’s Association. She’s a past Editor of the CAA Niagara annual Anthology and has appeared as a guest speaker at numerous Arts Festivals. She was featured in a televised production of ‘A Christmas Carol’ with the CBC.  She also belongs to the NOTL Pumphouse Art Gallery, and is a past board member with NOTL Newcomers Club.

    Contact Sharon To Book A Visit:

      Krampien, Celia (Welland, ON)

      SCBWI member.

      Celia Krampien writes and illustrates picture books and novels for young people. She grew up in a small town (population 400) in rural Southern Ontario where she spent most of her time reading and exploring the woods around her house. Celia loves creating bright, colourful, emotionally complex books. Celia’s books are best suited for students in grades JK – 8 but is happy to be flexible and adapt presentations to meet the needs of students of any age.

      Book topics: the power of stories, handling adversity, facing fears, differences in perspective, friendship, bullying, Halloween.

      RATES*:

      Virtual Visits

      $200 – 1 hour virtual presentation + drawing activity + Q&A  (Gr 3 and up)

      $100 – 30 minute picture book story time and drawing demo (Gr JK – 2)

      In-Person Visits

      $250 – two 30 minute picture book story time and drawing activity sessions (Gr JK – 2)

      $300 – 1 hour  presentation + interactive activity + Q&A (Gr 3 and up)

      $500 – two 1 hour presentations with interactive activity and Q&A (Gr 3 and up)

      $900 – all day visit, as many presentations/activities/Q&A sessions as we can fit! (Gr JK and up)

      In-Person, Large Groups (50+ attendees)

      $400 – 1 hr presentation + interactive activity + Q&A (requires podium, slideshow projection system, microphone & sound system)

      *HST will be charged on all fees

      Presentations (all can all be offered virtually or in-person)

      Storytime and draw-along – 30 mins (JK – Grade 2)

      – Picture book(s) read aloud

      – Drawing and colouring activity – students can draw and colour along as Celia demonstrates how to draw characters from her books

      – Q & A session

      Telling Stories with Pictures – 1 hour (Grades 3 – 5)

      – Slideshow presentation about using words and pictures as storytelling tools with examples from Celia’s recent book with Kristen Dickson, Fiona Builds a Fairyhouse

      – interactive drawing activity – students draw along with Celia, drawing their own fairytale creatures and creating a story to introduce them to the rest of the class (requires easel and large pad of paper)

      – Q&A session

      How a Story Becomes a Book (And Why Does it Take So Long?!) – 1 hour (Grades 4 and up)

      – slideshow presentation showing the step-by-step process of the creation of Celia’s spooky middle grade novel, The Bellwoods Game. Students will get a behind the scenes peek at Celia’s journey, starting at her first attempts at writing through to publication day

      – interactive activity- students will tryout different brainstorming techniques to answer the age old question of where ideas come from (requires easel and large pad of paper)

      – Q&A session

      Cover Stories – the making of a book cover (Grades 4 and up)

      – slideshow presentation about the step-by-step process of creating illustrated covers for middle grade novels and why sometimes it’s okay to judge a book by its cover

      – interactive activity – students draw along with Celia to create their own book covers (requires easel and large pad of paper)

      – Q&A session

      Equipment Required:

      –      Projector to display slideshow (in-person visits)

      –      easel and large pad of paper for presentations activities

      –      Paper, pencils/crayons/markers for students for presentations with brainstorming and draw-along activities.

      –      Microphone, sound system and podium for larger groups (50+ attendees)

      Contact Celia to book a visit:

        Stewart, Michael (Ottawa, ON)

        Fiction/Poetry, Two X Ottawa Book Award Nominee, Snow Willow Award nominee, eOne Television Adaptation Lab winner, Publishers Weekly BookLife Grand Prize winner, Twice named a Kirkus Reviews Best Book, and more. TWUC, SCBWI, and CANSCAIP. Ages 9+.

        $150 per session plus a publisher book bundle (each curated bundle includes 5 middle grade, or 5 young adult novels), up to four sessions per day. Plus a travel fee of $0.50/km, if outside of Ottawa area. Virtual Visits: $100 for each session.

        Michael tailors presentations based on the needs and desires of the group and can speak to any element of writers craft and process. He can do up to four presentations in the same school per day. As the author of middle grade novels, a middle grade novel in verse, interactive fiction, scriptwriting, and young adult novels, Michael enjoys working with students in workshop format, or as a presentation with a preference for audiences of under 60 students.

        Presentations by grade (60 Minutes):

        Michael always covers the top five questions (How did you become a writer? Where do you get your ideas? What’s the name of your cat?) quickly before delving into the presentation, always being sure to include: Why stories matter, why the students’ stories matter, and how knowing how to tell stories can help them be successful in any field. 

        Here are example themes by grade:

        4-8: Let’s write a story: Using a super secret technique, Michael works with students to generate strong story concepts. This includes learning the elements of a story pitch and can end with delivering and whiteboarding pitch ideas to go deeper and inadvertently learn Aristotelian story structure.

        4-7: Digital Resilience Through Poetry: Based on Michael’s novel in verse, Seeking Draven. This interactive presentation and workshop scaffolds student understanding of the internet, social media, and other digital literacies, while incorporating literary devices and poetry. If time allows, the students use prompts to develop their own poems. 

        7-9: The Heart of Structure: Using his novel Heart Sister, Michael explains how to use theme as a structuring tool, connecting this technique to popular books and movies. Further discussions explore students’ thoughts on organ donation, a central element to Heart Sister. Michael shares his family’s organ donation story and why he wrote the book. We explore common myths about organ donation and truths—completing a quiz as a class. Finally, we complete a private exercise in which the students explore the same questions Minnie asks other characters in the book, generally about self improvement. Heart Sister was named an official educational resource by Canadian Blood Services.

        4-12: Michael can elaborate on any elements of craft desired, from character, setting, structure, and theme to humour and literary devices.

        7-12: Emotion Driven Stories: In this interactive presentation, Michael shows the connection between emotion, stories, and healing ourselves. Using popular literature, movies, and his own books, Michael shows how powerfully resonant stories are based on therapeutic models we can use to create stories of our own.

        9-12: Advanced Craft: In this workshop-based format, Michael will work with up to 12 students to refine their stories. Includes Michael prereading student work and identifying elements of craft tailored to the students’ needs. Multiple sessions available.

        Anthology

        Grade 8+ School Anthology: Michael will organize a full grade (up to three classes) anthology of short stories. This includes a kick off session to identify the anthology’s theme, types of short stories, and what makes a strong short story. Later Michael will present techniques for successful self editing and peer editing, and tips on how to edit the work of others. After peer editing, Michael will assemble and format the ebook. Finally, students vote on preset cover options, and the book is launched on Amazon, allowing the students to try to hit number 1, while learning about the financial and marketing side of publishing. In total, this program includes 3 presentations, an ebook cover, ebook formatting, and ebook publication services. Please contact for fee.

        Contact Michael to Book a Visit:

          Varga, Andrew   (Oshawa, ON)

          Member of the Writers Union of Canada, the Royal Historical Society, and the Historical Novel Society. 2024 Red Maple Award Nominee.

          Rates: $250 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 Durham Region. 

          Virtual visit fees range from $100 – $200

          Andrew is an experienced and passionate speaker who tailors each presentation to the group in front of him. As someone who has studied history all his life, he loves speaking to children and adults about the lesson-known sides of history and why historical fiction is important for people to read. But he is also more than happy to work with teachers and educators if there are certain topics they wish to see covered and he can quickly adapt if the situation calls for it. 

          The Last Saxon King is a 2024 Forest of Reading Red Maple Nominee

          Andrew’s presentations involve a fun and immersive deep dive into the past, with audience participation a crucial part of the presentations. He doesn’t want to just talk to the audience, he wants them there with him as he takes them on a tour through the past. His presentations work best with students in grades 7 through high school. He prefers to speak to a maximum of 125 students at a time. He can be a bit flexible on this.

          Since his presentation is power point, he requires an LCD projector (provided by the school), or a smart board, a screen, and a microphone (if the audience size is over 50 kids). He will bring his own laptop.

          Contact Andrew to book a visit:

            Lukidis, Lydia (Montreal, Quebec)

            Award winning author Lydia Lukidis, shortlisted for a Silver Birch Express (Forest of Reading) Award and nominated for a Cybils Award. CANSCAIP, SCBWI, and 12×12 member.

            Rates:

            For in-person workshops (Montreal and surrounding areas)- $300 for one sixty-minute session, $450 for two, $600 for three, $750 for four, plus a travel fee of $0.50/km.

            For virtual workshops- $200 for a session of up to sixty minutes, $100 for each additional session on the same day, up to four sessions in one day. Flexible and able to accommodate schedules in a range of time zones.

            Lydia Lukidis is the author of 50+ trade and educational books for children. Her titles include DANCING THROUGH SPACE: Dr. Mae Jemison Soars to New Heights (Albert Whitman, 2024), DEEP, DEEP, DOWN: The Secret Underwater Poetry of the Mariana Trench (Capstone, 2023) which was shortlisted for the Silver Birch Express (Forest of Reading) Award, and THE BROKEN BEES’ NEST(Kane Press, 2019) which was nominated for a Cybils Award. A science enthusiast from a young age, Lydia now incorporates her studies in science and her everlasting curiosity into her books. She also enjoys writing books with social emotional learning (SEL) themes such as friendship, empathy, and gratitude.

            Workshops:

            Lydia has 15 years experience working with children in elementary schools. She’s passionate about spreading the love for literacy and her presentations are dynamic and lively. The goal is to entertain and educate in a way that illuminates the magic of the written word.

            Lydia offers writing workshops that tie in with educational curriculum for students from kindergarten to grade six. Each workshop begins with an initial presentation where she discusses her writing process giving particular attention to the art of editing. This will include some fun literacy games. Lydia will then help students brainstorm and start their own writing process. These workshops are an excellent opportunity for students to develop good writing and cognitive skills, improve literacy, and tap into creative self-expression. Study guides and follow up activities will be provided.

            The workshops are tailored for each grade, here are the various options:

            • Story Making 101 (1-6)
            • Character Development (K-6)
            • Fairy Tale Magic (1-4)
            • The Power of Mythology (4-6)
            • Persuasive Writing (2-6)
            • The Art of Poetry (2-6)
            • Personal Narratives (2-6)
            • Crafting Nonfiction (2-6)
            • Let’s Write a Book (2-6, a special 3-part workshop where students communally write and illustrate a book that Lydia will print)
            • Author Reading with Puppetry Workshop (K-3)
            • Advanced Narrative Building (6)

            (35 students maximum for in-person, 100 for virtual)

            Presentations:

            • Sparking Interest through STEM: This presentation will show children that STEM is not only all around us, but it’s also fun and exciting! (K-3)
            • Dream Big and Take the Leap: This presentation will highlight the perseverance required to achieve your dreams and how seeming “failures” can help you carve your path to success. The goal is to inspire students to dream big! (3-6)

            (100 students maximum)

            Suggested Reading:

            Grades 2-5:

            DEEP, DEEP, DOWN: The Secret Underwater Poetry of the Mariana Trench is a lyrical spare-text STEM picture book that takes readers on a journey to where few humans have ever been. The narrative debunks scary myths about this mysterious place with surprising and beautiful truths about life at Earth’s deepest point.

            (Themes: STEM, deep sea, biodiversity, conservation, oceanography, biology, geology)

            Kindergarten-3:

            The Broken Bees’ Nest (Makers Make It Work series)

            Arun and Keya find the perfect tree for a tree house. Too bad it comes with a battered bees’ nest! These bees need a new home―right away! Tying into the popular Makers Movement, Makers Make It Work is a series of fun easy-to-read stories that focus on problem-solving and hands-on action. This charming story explores the Makers theme of Beekeeping and includes explanatory sidebars and an insect-related activity for young makers to try themselves!

            (Themes: STEM, honeybees, beekeeping, beehives, pollination, biology)

            For Q&A’s, it’s recommended to read the book in class and prepare questions in advance if possible.

            Requirements:

            Lydia will require a smart board with functional speakers for a PowerPoint or Google Slides presentation. Students will need pencils, erasers, loose-leaf paper, and sometimes pencil crayons and markers. In order to ensure a successful workshop, it is essential that at least one educator/librarian remain in class for the duration of the workshop. For larger presentations in-person, she will require a table, microphone, and a proper PA system.

            Lydia also provides manuscript critiques for fiction and nonfiction.

            Contact Lydia to book a visit:

              Campbell, Curtis. (Toronto, ON)

              Curtis Campbell

              White Pine 2024 nomination. Dora Mavor Moore Award, Best New Play nominee. Second City Award For Outstanding Comedy winner.

              Booking Rates: $300 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 Toronto.

              Virtual visit fee: $200

              Curtis Campbell is a novelist and playwright based out of Toronto. His novel Dragging Mason County is a nominee for the 2024 White Pine award, and was recently given a starred review by Publisher’s Weekly. Curtis performs drag and comedy under the name Alanis Percocet.

              Presentations

              Curtis Campbell is a novelist and playwright with years of experience in Theatre For Young Audiences and leading classroom workshops. He offers formal writing workshops, and less formal classroom talks about his work and about the craft of writing. His workshops are available for grade 6-12 and are adjusted based on the age bracket.

              Grade 6-12

               45-90 minute workshops

              Dragging Mason County

              Discussion of the White Pine nominated novel, and Curtis’ process while writing it. Discussion topics include LGBTQIA+ youth issues, friendship and chosen family, allyship, homophobia and transphobia, theatre and drag, managing mental health, managing anger, issues around social media,and gender expression.

              Talk To An Author and Playwright

              An engaging Q+A about the literary and theatre industries with a particular interest in discussing how students can begin developing, or continue developing their own artistic practice.

              Writing Character Voice

              A workshop on writing in the first person, how to develop the voice of your character,  how to begin developing your writing style, and how to effectively critique your own work and other’s. Students will share their work

              Self Editing

              A practical workshop on editing for both fiction and non-fiction to produce more engaging writing.

              Developing Comedic Voice

              As an award winning comedy writer, I know a thing or two about writing effective pieces in a comedic voice. This workshop will involve a look at my own approach to comedy, and how I developed my own comedic voice. From there the students will write short comedic monologues before discussing what works about them, and how the students can take that writing further.

              Playwriting

              I am a working playwright and have ten years of experience creating plays in both the independent and professional worlds. This workshop will explore the basics of playwriting and teach students about the process of scene creation by having them write one of their own.

              Dialogue

              A practical workshop focussed on how dialogue works for both novels and plays, its use to convey character and plot, and how to develop dialogue consistent with the tone and style of the piece you are writing. Students will write and share work for discussion.

              Writing About Ourselves

              A workshop based around writing about yourself! In memoir, journal, fiction and nonfiction.
              I believe that everyone is a writer. People often say that they have nothing to write about, but we all have the ability to write about ourselves. This workshop is about putting yourself on the page using memory, identity, geography, imagination and site-specific practices to show students that they are writers too.

              These workshops can be performed in a single classroom, or with merged classrooms.

              The ideal group for writing workshops would be smaller, but I can make larger groups work just as well if there are a few staff members present.

              A microphone would be great to have if we are meeting in a gym or cafeteria.

              Workshops will always change by school and group, so I’m happy to customize and adjust based on your needs.

              Contact Curtis to book a visit:

                Grant, Vicki – (Halifax, Nova Scotia)

                Member – Writers Union of Canada, Writers Federation of Nova Scotia, CCBC and CANSCAIP.

                Middle-Grade and YA fiction.

                Grades 4-12. $300 plus HST for 1 session, $500 for 2, $750 for 3 and $1000 for 4, + travel (.68 cents per kilometer, round-trip for SW ON).

                Virtual Visits: $300 plus HST, for one session, 20-60 minutes, $200 for each additional session on the same day.

                Winner: Red Maple Award, Arthur Ellis Award winner for juvenile crime fiction, CBC Young Canada Reads winner.

                Nominated for Edgar Allan Poe Award, CLA Children’s Book of the Year, Young Canada Reads, New Jersey Library Association’s Garden State Teen Book Award, Ann Connor-Brimer Award x3, Red Cedar, Silver Birch x 2, Arthur Ellis x3, Red Maple, Golden Oak, BC Stellar, Saskatchewan Snow Willow x 3, and Hackmatack. Multiple awards for children’s television scripts and advertising work.

                Television screenwriter, advertising copywriter and multi-award-winning author of eighteen middle-grade and young adult novels, Vicki brings her trademark humour to the classroom in her fun and informative school visits. Geared to the interests of the class, her presentations will delight Grades Four through Twelve. “The best presentation we ever had!” Ian Forsyth Elementary. “A wonderful rapport with students of any age!” Ellenvale Junior High. “She entranced our Grade 12 writing class!” St. Paul Catholic High School.

                Vicki loves being a writer but that doesn’t mean she always loves to write. Illustrated with humorous slides and personal examples, her presentations focus on the tricks she’s learned to keep herself inspired and productive. She engages the class with hilarious read-alouds, lively Q & As, and easy exercises geared to their interest and age-group. She’s also happy to give presentations about writing humour, plotting mystery novels, character development and, for older kids, the business of writing.

                Here’s a selection of her books:

                Quid Pro Quo: A comic high-action legal thriller for 10 to 14-year olds

                Also available in French

                “A very, very funny book. I couldn’t put it down!” CBC’s Children’s Book Panel

                “The kind of timing, pacing, deadpan one-liners and punchy humour that a seasoned stand-up would envy…but real and funny.” Quill & Quire starred review.

                Winner of the Arthur Ellis Award for Best Juvenile Crime Novel, CBC Young Canada Reads. A Silver Birch Honour Book. Nominated for the Edgar Allan Poe Award, CLA Children’s Book of the Year, Young Canada Reads, New Jersey Library Association’s Garden State Teen Book Award, Ann Connor-Brimer Award, Red Cedar Award. A New York Public Library Best Book for Teens. Bank Street College List of Best Books

                A Green Velvet Secret: A Middle-Grade mystery about love, grief and fabulous vintage clothes

                “Upbeat and heartwarming. Stock up on tissues and settle in for a wholly satisfying read. Highly recommended.” CM: CANADIAN REVIEW OF MATERIALS

                “Quirky, fully fleshed characters and a tender third-person narration accompany themes of grieving…in this winning novel.” PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY

                Short for Chameleon: A Middle-Grade mystery about a boy, his Dad, and their rented family.

                Red Maple nominee. Also available in French

                “Short for Chameleon is a near perfect book. It bursts with a unique voice and a delightfully surprising plot.” Quill & Quire

                “A delightful, quirky, and engaging read. 4 out of 4 stars.” CM

                “Original, hilarious and evocative.” — Resource Links 

                Pigboy: A comic high-low adventure novel for 10 to 14 year-olds

                ALA Quick Pick 2008, Silver Birch Honour Book

                Also available in French

                “Grant hits the nail on the head…A compelling story with lots of suspense, but it’s the journey to Dan’s personal redemption that is most enjoyable to read. Highly recommended.” CM Magazine

                “Grant has done a fantastic job of developing the voice of an adolescent who is the class bully’s whipping boy. Dan’s wry sense of humor catches readers’ attention and has them rooting for him practically from the first page. Pigboy is a great quick read for boys who may be reluctant readers but others will enjoy it as well.” School Library Journal

                36 Questions That Changed My Mind About You: A YA romcom based on a real psychological study

                Also available in French

                White Pine Honour Book. Chosen by the Toronto Public Library for THE LIST – 100 top books for teens

                Foreign rights sold to 20 territories worldwide.

                “Lots of laughs and a message about looking past appearances to make a connection” Publishers Weekly

                Tell Me When You Feel Something: A YA medical thriller

                Ann Connor Brimer nominee, CCBC’s Best Books for Kids and Teens, Fall 2021 — Starred Pick

                “An important representation of the pressure that teenagers can feel and the damaging coping habits that they can use to maintain a semblance of normalcy.” —CM: Canadian Review of Materials

                Maximum group sizes for presentations: 100+ for everyone else.

                Writing Workshops 10 to 20 participants

                Writing Workshop Topics:

                Funny Pages: Tips on writing humour

                Whodunnit?: How to plot a satisfying mystery

                Making friends (or enemies!): Developing realistic and engaging characters

                Other topics upon request.

                All venues, library or classroom preferred. Equipment needed: A small table for books. A microphone if the room requires it. A screen and projector. (I have a MacBook but can also bring my presentation saved in Power Point on a USB stick.) A glass of water and lunch if I’m staying for the day. (I don’t need anything fancy!)

                Contact Vicki to book a visit:

                  Campbell, Duncan (Toronto, ON)

                  Bilingual (English with some Spanish words) early elementary picture book in rhyming verse for all ages.

                  In-Person Workshops: $200 plus HST for 1 session of 20-60 minutes, $350 for 2, $500 for 3 and $650 for 4, + travel (60 cents per kilometer for SW Ontario).

                  Virtual Workshops: $150 plus HST for one session of 20-60 minutes, $125 for each additional session on the same day.

                  Books

                  Duncan admits that he’s always alert
                  For words he can use for a rhyme
                  Putting them into relatable verses
                  That hopefully you think sound fine
                  Sometimes it all comes out awesome
                  Sometimes it’s almost divine
                  And you can be sure that the best ones
                  Will cost you much more than a dime!

                  … But if you should find that your wallet
                  Is currently looking quite thin
                  He’ll do it for less than what’s written
                  So we can all have a big win!

                  Duncan has been playing with words all his life, is a terminal rhyming addict, and all three of his children have nominated him for the “Lethal Punster Award.” He is a writer of prose, poetry, and songs, an experienced speaker, and skilled in doing workshops with audiences of all ages on diverse subjects, including how to do rhyming poetry. He has travelled the world, working with a broad array of cultures and people groups, especially in Africa and Latin America. His areas of expertise include international relief and development, travel and adventure, cross-cultural experiences, and, of course, rhyming! Duncan is an experienced children’s worker, with over 30-years of teaching short, appealing lessons to children ages 4 and up, singing songs with actions, and organising fun games. He tailors his talks to each group, and is available to do multiple talks or workshops over the course of the day. He can share from his 30 years of international experiences, and from his life-long writing journey to finally becoming a published author. Duncan would be especially happy to do joint talks, presentations, and workshops with Ashlee Campbell, the main author of Señora Sanasana. (See Ashlee’s profile for more details.)

                  Examples of workshop options:

                  All presentations available in English, Spanish, French, or a combination of language of instruction.

                  JK- Gr. 2:

                  • Duncan only: 30–60-minute workshop, reading Señora Sanasana out loud, discussion about some of the verses and how they rhyme, definition of a rhyme, how to find rhymes and make rhyming verses, use of a Thesaurus, exercises to write one rhyming verse couplet and volunteers to share. Includes speaker-led, multilingual “brain breaks” for children such as fun games and action songs.
                  • With Ashlee: 60–75-minute workshop, Ashlee leading with study of character creation or learning the Spanish words, including exercises and sharing. (See Ashlee Campbell’s profile for more details.) Duncan would follow with the rhyming component and help with breaks throughout.

                  Gr. 3-6:

                  • Duncan only: 30–60-minute workshop, study more rhymes from Señora Sanasana, deeper dive into concept of rhyming and Thesaurus usage, longer exercise in writing rhyming verses.
                  • With Ashlee: 60–75-minute workshop, Ashlee leading, deeper dive into character creation based on common nursery rhymes, sayings and idiomatic expressions, longer writing activity, group discussions, and more sharing by students. (See Ashlee Campbell’s profile for more details.) Duncan intervening for rhyming components integrated throughout the workshop, and assisting with brain break games and action songs.

                  Highschool and Adult:

                  • Duncan only: 45–90-minute workshop, deeper and longer dive into the concept and practice of rhyming, creating rhyming verse, Thesaurus usage, increased content creation time to write a full poem or story in rhyming verse, and everyone sharing and critiquing each other.
                  • With Ashlee: 60-90-minute workshop, or two sessions for increased content creation time. Character creation as above, with discussion of “own voice” stories and introduction to constructive writing critique groups. (See Ashlee Campbell’s profile for details.) Duncan adding rhyming analysis, exercises, and critique throughout.

                  Duncan and Ashlee also take workshops on request.

                  All Venues. All Group Sizes. Equipment required: A table or podium. A microphone for larger groups and when room acoustics require it. A screen and projector for power-point and videos.

                  Contact Duncan to book a visit:

                    Campbell, Ashlee (Toronto, Ontario)

                    Bilingual early elementary picture book (Spanish/English). All ages.

                    $200 plus HST for 1 session, $350 for 2, $500 for 3 and $650 for 4, + travel (50 cents per kilometer, round-trip for SW ON). Virtual Visits: $150 plus HST, for one session, 20-60 minutes, $125 for each additional session on the same day.

                    Ashlee is an experienced speaker and Creative Writing teacher at the highschool and elementary levels. Ashlee tailors her talks to each group and is available to present in English, Spanish and French or a combination of languages of instruction. Ashlee is available to do multiple talks or workshops over the course of the day with groups ranging from kindergarten to high school. As a homeschool co-op organizer Ashlee also prepares talks and workshops for mixed-age groups. Ashlee has also given talks on writing, publishing and the author’s journey for adult groups.

                    Sample pre-recorded workshops available upon request. Ashlee also takes workshop requests.

                    Examples of workshop options:

                    All presentations available in English, French and Spanish or a combination of language of instruction.

                    JK- Gr. 2 – 45 – 60 mins (including speaker-led multilingual “brain breaks” for children)

                    Reading of “Senora Sanasana” followed by a character creation workshop including a LA tie-in worksheet for Gr. 2 and a drawing activity for younger ages.

                    OR

                    Reading of “Senora Sanasana” followed by learning Spanish words and class discussion about languages spoken and heard in the children’s home and communities and creation of a classroom word cloud of words in other languages the children know.

                    Gr. 3-6 – 45 – 60 mins

                    Character creation workshop based on common nursery rhymes, sayings and idiomatic expressions, including worksheet and writing activity and group discussion about the rhymes and sayings from their diverse backgrounds. Workshop includes time for students to share their characters.

                    Highschool – 45 – 60 mins or two sessions for increased content creation time

                    Introduction to critique circle practices and character creation workshop (see above). Workshop includes discussion of “own voice” stories and how to create supportive, compassionate and constructive writing critique groups.

                    Adults – 45 – 60 mins

                    “Abundance versus scarcity for artists” – this is a talk on having an “abundance” mentality as an artist, basing our creative practices on the belief that there is enough space and enough audience in the world for everyone’s art and writing. This talk also delves into how we define success and takes an anti-capitalist approach to redefining both “success” and “audience” in order for artists to thrive.

                    All Venues. All Group Sizes. Equipment required: A table or podium. A microphone for larger groups or in the gym, or if the room acoustics require it. A screen and projector for power-point.

                    Contact Ashlee to book a visit: