McLeod, Cinders (Toronto)

Writers’ Union Member. Now doing virtual visits only: $200 for one 60 minute session, $350 for 2, $525 for 3, $675 for 4. Maximum 4
sessions per day. JK to SK: two 30-minute sessions for the price of 1.

Cinders presents to JK to Grade 3. Single class size is best for discussion, but Cinders is flexible.

Author-illustrator of the Moneybunnies financial literacy for young children series, published by Penguin N.Y. She is also a well known human rights cartoonist and musician. Cinders has 20 years’ experience in Canadian and British books and newspapers, is the creator of the 8-year-old Broomie Law cartoon and one of the few published, women political cartoonists in the world. She is also an experienced performer (singer, songwriter, double bassist with a record on Billy Bragg’s label) and cartoon workshop presenter. She wrote and illustrated EARN IT! SPEND IT! SAVE IT! and GIVE IT! for ages 3- 8 because it’s never too early to teach children about money. The Moneybunnies series is popular with STEM educators.

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Narsimhan, Mahtab (BC)

Mahtab Narsimhan- H20-209960 8x10 300Writers’ Union Member. Silver Birch winning author available for school, public library, and conference visits. Member of The Writers’ Union of Canada. Continue reading “Narsimhan, Mahtab (BC)”

Skrypuch, Marsha Forchuk (Brantford ON)

Writers Union Member. Fiction & NF, 2X Silver Birch winner, 2x Red Cedar Winner, Yellow Cedar Winner. Multi awards. All ages. $400 plus HST for 1 session, $650 for 2, $900 for 3 and $1100 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.

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Camlot, Heather (Toronto, ON)

Writers’ Union Member. Fiction and nonfiction writer.

Heather’s rates are $300 for one session, $550 for two, $800 for three. For virtual presentations: $300 for one session, $500 for two. HST applies to all sessions. No travel costs within Toronto or if I am in your city (I travel to Montreal several times a year). Able to present in English and French.

Heather is an award-winning children’s author, journalist, editor and translator. Her two middle-grade novels, CLUTCH and THE OTHER SIDE, received Skipping Stones Honor Awards and nominations for Forest of Reading, among other honors. CLUTCH was also named a 2017 Best Book from Kirkus Reviews.

Heather is also an accomplished nonfiction writer. SECRET SCHOOLS and THE PRISONER AND THE WRITER were named Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selections and What If Soldiers Fought with Pillows? True Stories of Imagination and Determination received a Skipping Stones Honor Award. Her next nonfiction book, Becoming Bionic and Other Ways Science is Making Us Super,

In her presentations, Heather aims to entertain and educate, leaving the audience interested in writing fiction and nonfiction as well as looking into their own history for inspiration.

PRESENTATIONS (60 minutes, grades 3+)


Heather engages students with a fun and interactive presentation, customized to audience and interest.

  • Generally speaking: Heather shares the inspiration and the challenges of writing works that delve into history and social justice. She also discusses the basic elements of writing fiction and/or nonfiction, how to give stories life through research and why bringing the past to the present is so important. Q&A session and reading are included.
  • What does it mean to be a superhero?: This STEM/STEAM-related presentation draws on BECOMING BIONIC. We’ll delve get into how science is turning us into superbeings – powering up our bodies with what we may not have been born with and what we may never have thought we’d need. We’ll discuss what those powers look like in the real world, based on the sections of Becoming Bionic. We’ll create our own superhero identities and answer the ultimate question: Cape or no cape.
  • Stand up and speak out: This social-justice-related presentation, based on THE PRISONER AND THE WRITER, begins with a quote from Captain Alfred Dreyfus: “My only crime is to have been born a Jew.” How would students fill in the last word of Captain Dreyfus’s quote to reflect their lives or world around them? We’ll discuss the meaning of social justice, play a game of news fact vs news fiction, and discuss ways to stand up and speak out.

Maximum presentation size: 100 for virtual presentations; 60 for in-person reading/Q&A. Teacher and/or librarian must be present.

WORKSHOPS (60 minutes, grades 3+)

  • Look no further: A simple moment can kickstart the writing process. Students choose a moment in their own lives or family history and turn into a work of fiction or nonfiction. Based on CLUTCH and THE OTHER SIDE.
  • What’s news?: Bias in the media is not difficult to spot. This session will delve into media literacy and how to determine if what you’re reading is fact…or fiction. I’ll test students’ knowledge of news fact vs news fiction through a fun game and we’ll create a reference guide to better judge whether what they are reading, seeing, hearing is objective, biased or completely fake. Based on THE PRISONER AND THE WRITER.
  • A single object: A single object can inspire an entire world. Students will begin with an “item of interest” and learn how to add different layers — setting, storyline, character, big reveal — to build a short story. Based on THE OTHER SIDE.
  • Just the facts: How do you write a nonfiction book that makes tough subjects compelling and easy to understand all the while ensuring it stick to the truth? Based on her nonfiction books.
  • Get activ-ist!: “What cause would you defend…and how would you defend it?” We’ll discuss various forms of activism and what is important to students right now. We’ll come up with methods to get messages across and students will put ideas into action by creating a poster for their cause. Based on THE PRISONER AND THE WRITER and I CAN’T DO WHAT?
  • Customized topic: Heather is happy to tailor workshops to your needs and audience, including educators and the general public. Topics can include social injustice, advocacy, World War II, the Holocaust, antisemitism, soccer, baseball, media literacy, arts and entertainment, etc.

Maximum workshop size: 30 (flexible).
Equipment required: Flip chart and markers, screen and projector, microphone and podium (for large rooms), paper and pencils (for workshops). Teacher and/or librarian must be present.

Heather offers the services of professional editing, copyediting, proofreading and
translating. She also provides manuscript evaluations – fiction and nonfiction.

Contact Heather to book a visit:

    Younge-Ullman, Danielle (Toronto, ON)

    Writers Union Member. White Pine Award Winner and two-time nominee, also nominated for Governor General’s award, Amy Mathers Teen Book award, Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz award, among others—a total of 18 nominations and Best-of lists. YA Author of HE MUST LIKE YOU, EVERYTHING BEAUTIFUL IS NOT RUINED, and LOLA CARLYE’S 12 STEP ROMANCE.

    Danielle’s virtual visit fee is $200 per 50-60 minute session. In person visits are $300 for 1 hour presentation; $550 for 2, $800 for 3, plus travel for locations outside Toronto.

    Danielle is a confident and dynamic presenter who loves talking about books with people of all ages. She attained a BA from McGill, worked for years as an actor before turning to writing, and has had a wild variety of jobs—everything from acting, to dubbing English voices for Japanese TV, to temping, to teaching Pilates, to freelance writing. Danielle lives Toronto with her husband and two daughters.

    Presentations: Because of her background in theatre, Danielle is very comfortable in front of an audience and loves engaging with readers. Though she writes teen fiction, she can also adjust her presentations for groups as young as grade 5 and 6. Presentations can be geared toward each group, and can be done with more of a workshop emphasis if required. All presentations include time for questions!

    Age range: grades 5 and up, but ideally grades 7-12. Danielle also loves presenting to and working with adult groups, and meeting with book clubs.

    Topics:

    Pantsters, Plotters & Making Soup: A discussion of the essential elements of fiction, and explanations of some of the different techniques used by writers to craft story and write fiction.

    Turning Real Life Into Fiction: The process of using your own stories as inspiration for fiction is deeper, more layered, and much more detailed than it looks. In this session, Danielle will take you through the process of distilling the essence of your experiences, and using the most compelling themes and elements to create a work of fiction, using He Must Like You and Everything Beautiful Is Not Ruined as examples.

    How to Pursue a Career as a Novelist: A presentation that explains the process of becoming a professional writer, from beginning writing through searching for an agent, to going through the process of being published. This presentation is great for students who are interested in the arts, and in the process of making decisions about their futures.

    How to Revise the Crap Out of Your Manuscript: Danielle is an in-depth and joyfully ruthless reviser. In this session she will go through the steps she takes to revise her manuscripts in a way that can also be applied to shorter works. Subjects will include character consistency, POV, tone, tightening and/or expanding, layering in new characters and plot lines, analyzing structure, and general troubleshooting of things that aren’t working. 

    Equipment: podium or desk, microphone for groups larger than 40. Maximum group size: 40-60 for optimum interaction, but Danielle is also comfortable in front of larger groups. 25 or fewer for workshops.

    Contact Danielle Younge-Ullman:

      Hohn, Nadia (Toronto)

      The Writers Union member. Picture book. All ages. $350 for 1 session (60 min) $ 600 for 2 sessions of 60 minutes (1/2 day)$ 400 for 2 x 30 minute sessions (great for JK to 1). Full day (4 sessions) $ 1000. + kilometrage. Can present in English and French.

      Nadia is fully booked for the remainder of the 2021/2022 school season. She is currently scheduling for the 2022/2023 school year. 

      Malaika’s Costume (2016) and Malaika’s Winter Carnival (2017).

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      Messier, Mireille (Toronto, ON)

      Writers’ Union Member. French/English author. Picture books. Great for immersion students! K to 6.

      Mireille’s rate for a 45/50-minute virtual presentation is $250 for 1-5 classes, $350 for 6-10 classes and $450 for 11+ classes. HST extra. Please note that presentations may not be recorded for later use or shared.

      Mireille has a picture book ideal for Remembrance Day with students in grades 1-6! Contact her about presenting “Sergeant Billy: The True Story of the Goat Who Went to War” at your school or event! (available in English or French)

      Mireille can present “Treasure”/ “Trésor”, “The Branch” / “Ma branche préférée” and “Fatima and the Clementine Thieves/Fatima et les voleurs de clémentines” ans “La magie de Casse-Noisette”/ “Nutcracker Night” in either English or French or both.

      Mireille also has many books that are published in French only and range in genre – from picture books, to chapter books and non-fiction. She enjoys presenting to immersion students and offers lively presentations that are tailored to the language level of the students.

      School presentations will include a reading of the selected book, an activity based on the theme of the book and a discussion with the author about her craft.

      Available in French or English/French (bilingual) Mireille is a member of The Writers’ Union of Canada, and so schools wishing to invite her may be eligible for a travel and fee subsidy to off-set the cost of her visit.

      Here is an example of her presentations by grade:

      JK to 1: two 30-minute sessions for the price of one full session using her book “Quel fouillis!” (includes a tool-related activity and a song) or “Une Bestiole à l’école” (includes an insect-related activity and a song).

      Grade 1 to 4: The majority of Mireille’s books are for this age group. 45 to 60 minutes: Session featuring a book of your choice plus a related activity followed by a Q&A on topic/book selected.

      Themes available: Remembrance Day/World War I/ World War II/Military Mascot (Sergeant Billy), Environmental conservation (Treasure/Trésor), Environment/Weather (The Branch/Ma branche préférée), Nature/Animals (Tellement Sauvage), Travel/Geography (Charlotte partout), Non-Violent Conflict Resolution (Fatima), Anagrams/Word Play (Voilier d’Olivier/Quand les zéros), Food/Cooking (Salade de César), Sports (Charlotte Olympique)…

      Grade 4 to 6: 45 to 60 minutes. Session featuring a book of your choice plus a related activity followed by a Q&A on topic/book selected. Books available for this level are “Fatima et les voleurs de clémentines” (advanced picture book) and the middle-grade chapter books from Les aventures de Viviane et Simon series.

      Contact Mireille to book a visit:

        Kerbel, Deborah (Toronto, ON)

        Writers’ Union Member. Fiction & NF. GG finalist. Forest of Reading Yellow Cedar Winner. Red Cedar Winner. 2x Junior Library Guild Gold Standard. Silver Birch Honour. Picture Book, Middle Grade, Graphic Novel, Young Adult.

        In-person: $350 for one session, $600 for 2, $850 for 3, $1000 for 4, + travel (no travel costs within GTA). Full day fee can be split between two neighbouring schools. Out of town visits require two or more bookings. Can present in English and French.

        Virtual Visits: $250, for one session, 20-60 minutes, $150 for each additional session on the same day.

        Deborah Kerbel is the award-winning author of twenty-five books for children and teens. She’s an experienced presenter and energetic speaker who uses an interactive style to engage her audience. She loves visiting new schools, travelling, sharing her passion for books, and meeting readers and writers of all ages. Her enthusiasm is infectious and Deborah has often been called “the best author who has ever visited our school”. Based in Thornhill, Ontario, she’s the proud mom of two young adults and a rescue Schnoodle named Fred.

        SAMPLE PRESENTATIONS BY GRADE (I’m always open to requests for modifications and/or specific books):

        Sun Dog – Grades K-3

        During this 45 minute presentation, I read from my award-winning picture book, Sun Dog and discuss the inspiration behind the story. We talk about where ideas come from and how thoughts and ideas can grow into something bigger. We look at the artwork and talk about the differences between rough drafts and final illustrations. Finally, we discuss some of the science between the pages such as the Arctic Circle, Midnight Sun, Sun Dogs, as well as life in the arctic.

        Final 10 – 15 minutes of my presentation will be available for Q & A.

        *a shorter, 25 minute version of this presentation is available on request for JK-G1.

        Weather Days  – Grades K-3

        During this 45 minute presentation, I will read from a selection of the four titles from my award-winning picture book series (Snow Days, Sunny Days, Windy Days, Rainy Days), and discuss the inspiration behind the stories. I’ll speak to students about the seasons and various different kinds of weather that accompany them. There will be fun grade-specific STEM activities to accompany each book. Final 10 – 15 minutes of my presentation will be available for Q & A.

        *a shorter, 25 minute version of this presentation is available on request for JK – G1.

        The Path to Publication – Grades 4-8

        During this interactive 60 minute presentation, I discuss who I am, how I became a writer, and my road to publication. I also include a fun quiz on famous children’s authors which always captures the interest of the audience and encourages their participation. Publication is a difficult road and one of the main themes of my presentation is how hard work, persistence, and determination will always lead to success. I also discuss my novels and upcoming projects, including various personal anecdotes about each of my books.

        During the final 15 minutes of my presentation will be for a reading from my latest book + Q & A session.

        Fred & Marjorie – Grades 4-8

        During this 60 minute presentation, I will discuss and expand on the historical and scientific themes from my 2023 Forest of Reading Award Winning graphic novel, Fred & Marjorie, starting with an explanation of what diabetes is, how it used to be treated before insulin, the role of insulin in the body, and the process by which it was discovered by Banting and Best in Ontario in 1921. I will also discuss the role of the insulin dogs in this discovery, and touch on the ethics of using animals in medical research.

        The final 10 – 15 minutes of my presentation will be available for Q & A.

        Maximum number of students per session: 60-80 (flexible)

        Venue: All acceptable, but library preferred.

        Equipment requirements: Projector and screen, glass of water, microphone for larger groups.

        Workshops: Deborah’s interactive workshop is designed to help emerging writers take their craft to the next level. Participants can expect to come away with a variety of creative new ideas and material for their writing as well as the tools to implement them. We’ll discuss story ideas, characters, settings, and plot problems. During the final part of the workshop, participants will take several minutes to write a scene using some of the story components that were collectively brainstormed within the group.

        Maximum workshop size: 15 (flexible)

        Venue: All acceptable, but library preferred.

        Equipment requirements: Projector and screen, glass of water, microphone for larger groups.

        Contact Deborah Kerbel to book a visit:

          Groth, Darren (Vancouver)

           

           

           

           

           

           

          Vancouver BC. Writers’ Union Member. Aussie adopted by Canada; Finalist in GG Lit Awards and BC Book Prizes, multi awards in Australia.

          Fees: $300 for 1 session, $500 for 2, $700 for 3, 850 for 4 (plus HST). A day can be
          shared between two cooperating schools. For the GTA (and Toronto bookings near GO stations), Darren can GO TRAIN (not buses or subway) travel both ways all day; he requires pick up and drop off at the GO stations. Where GO Trains are not feasible, car or taxi pick-up from Darren’s hotel is requested.

          Virtual Visits: $100 plus HST, 30 minutes; $150 plus HST, 60 minutes FaceTime.

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          Carmichael, LE PhD (Trenton, ON)

          Carmichael1

          Writers’ Union Member. Award-winning author of more than 20 STEM books for kids.

          Fees for on-site visits: $350 + HST for up to one hour, $600 + HST half day, $900 + HST full day (4 hours). Travel and/or accommodation fees may also apply. Fees for virtual visits: $300 + HST for up to 1 hour, $200 + HST for each additional presentation on the same day, to a maximum of 4 hours.

          Lindsey specializes in making science engaging, relevant, and above all, fun. She also has 20 years’ experience as a writing instructor, offering workshops for both children and adults. 

          NEW STEM PROGRAM for 2023-24!

          (Ant)Arctic Adaptations: Wildlife at the Ends of the Earth. The polar regions are bitterly cold, freeze-dried wildernesses, where the wind can blow harder than hurricanes. They are also the only places on Earth where day—and night—last up to six months. And yet, many animals not only survive in these extreme environments, they thrive! After a brief introduction to the Arctic and Antarctica, kids will be asked to brainstorm a list of polar species. We’ll discuss the adaptations that help their favourite animals stay warm, find food, and raise their babies, all in two of the harshest habitats on the planet. Then, we’ll explore the extreme adaptations of some less-familiar species… including one that protects itself with projectile vomit! 

          This presentation draws on Lindsey’s experience living in the Arctic, her PhD research on northern wolves and arctic foxes, and her favourite facts from her all-new STEM book, PolarWildlife at the Ends of the Earth. Best for grades 4-6.

          STEM Programs for K-3

          What Is a Forest For? Introducing the Boreal Forest. The boreal forest is the largest, most northern forest in the world… and 29% of it is right here in Canada! This introduction to the boreal biome will help kids understand why forests matter. We’ll explore biodiversity with a look at the animals – both iconic and obscure! – who call the boreal forest home. Using a movement activity, we’ll then discuss photosynthesis and how it helps forests prevent climate change. This program runs approximately 30 minutes, leaving plenty of time to answer students’ questions.

          Laura and the Locusts. In 1875, a swarm of Rocky Mountain locusts destroyed Laura Ingalls Wilder’s family farm. This presentation integrates Laura’s descriptions of the swarm (from On the Banks of Plum Creek) with the newest scientific information on Locust Migration. It’s creepy, crawly fun!

          STEM Programs for 4-6

          Fur and Feathers and Frogs, Oh My! Amazing Animals of the Boreal Forest. Who calls the boreal forest home? Moose and loons and beavers are both iconic and familiar; tanukis and teals and star-nosed moles, not so much! After a brief introduction to the boreal forest, kids will be asked to brainstorm a list of boreal species. We’ll take a few moments to learn about some of the biome’s more unusual occupants, through a reading from The Boreal Forest that brings these species to vivid life. From the reading, kids will identify three common adaptations for surviving boreal winters, with examples of animals that use each one. We’ll then discuss two extreme winter adaptations before ending with plenty of time for questions.

          Ocean Migrations – Over the Ice and Under the Sea. What do wolves, humpback whales, and arctic foxes have in common? Whether over the ice or under the sea, their life cycles all include migration. Drawing on discoveries from Humpback Whale Migration and Lindsey’s award-winning PhD research, this program explores different types of migration and how the world’s oceans influence animal movements. The potential impacts of global climate change on wildlife migration are also discussed.

          STEM Programs for 7-12

          Source or Sink? The Carbon Cycle and Climate Change. Carbon sinks are ecosystems that trap more CO2 via photosynthesis than they release into the atmosphere each year. As our climate changes, scientists fear that some carbon sinks could become carbon sources… accelerating further warming. In this presentation, we’ll explore the stages of the carbon cycle in the context of the boreal forest and the polar regions, showing how regional events connect to a global process.  After discussing the impacts of climate change on life in northern and polar ecosystems, kids will take action by brainstorming simple strategies they can use to reduce their carbon footprints, influence climate policy, and preserve these vast Canadian wildernesses for future generations.

          Writing Workshops

          Grades 4-6: What’s Your Book About? How to Decide What to Leave Out. “What’s your book about?” is the second-most-common thing people ask a writer – just after “Where do you get your ideas?” But before we can tell other people, we have to be able to tell ourselves. Knowing what the book is really about lets us research efficiently, revise strategically, and avoid time-consuming tangents… producing a final draft that’s concise, cohesive, and effective. In this presentation, I share the coolest animal facts that aren’t in The Boreal Forest, and explain exactly why I cut them. Then, we’ll walk through each draft of the book’s opening scene, exploring the step-by-step-decision-making process of rewriting. Throughout the program, two-minute challenges will give students a chance to apply these techniques to their own manuscripts.

          Grades 7-12: Writing Down the Feels. Why do we forget some stories, while others stay with us for years? Be they nonfiction, fiction, or poetry, stories with staying power are the ones that make us feel. This workshop explores the connections between language and emotions, teaching writers how to manipulate their reader’s response. Students will harness the emotional resonance of vivid words and figures of speech, bringing their descriptions to life.

          Important Info:

          For on-site visits, Lindsey requires a laptop and projector for PowerPoint slides.

          For virtual visits, Lindsey can present in Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, and YouTube Live. She can accommodate schedules in a range of time zones.