Ludwig, Sidura (Thornhill, ON)

Membership: Writers’ Union of Canada, SCBWI, CANSCAIP, Association Jewish Libraries.

Awards: Vine Award for Fiction, 2021 (You Are Not What We Expected); Danuta Gleed Award, finalist, 2021; Carol Shields Winnipeg Book Award, finalist, 2008.

Presentation rates, in person:  $325 for one session, $500 for half day (two sessions), $1000 for full day (four sessions, max). For outside of GTA, $.50/km. Presentation rates, virtual: $200 per session.

Sidura is an internationally published writer of books for children and adults. She has over 30 years experience leading creative writing workshops to students of all ages. She loves nothing more than being in front of the classroom and sharing her life-long love of writing and books. She is the author of the picture book RISING (Candlewick, 2024), the middle grade novel SWAN (Nimbus, 2024), the adult short story collection YOU ARE NOT WHAT WE EXPECTED (House of Anansi, 2020) and the adult novel HOLDING MY BREATH (Key Porter Books, 2007).

Presentations

Middle Grade (4-8) (one hour)

Rejection is Your Best Friend – my journey on how I became a full-time working writer, including the year I tried to get rejected as many times as possible, and what I learnt along the way. Includes reading from SWAN, question and answer and short writing prompt.

Writing Historical Fiction – learn the background to writing SWAN, from idea, to research, to deciding why to write in verse. Includes photos from research in Nova Scotia. Writing workshop on how to get started when writing historical fiction and the importance of curiosity and asking questions (I WONDER poem).

Grades 1-3 (one hour)

How I became a picture book writer – presentation includes how I became a writer (with images from childhood), and how picture books get made. I read from RISING and include a lot of interactive questions with students. Art workshop on making a picture book, using an unpublished manuscript, where students get to be the illustrators. All art supplies included.

JK-SK (45 minutes)

Let’s Eat! – interactive song and storytime about making challah and celebrating Shabbat. Discussion on what foods do you eat when you are celebrating something? Read from RISING. Two station art workshop afterwards: 1) drawing picture of what you eat when you’re celebrating 2) learn to “braid challah” with Play Doh. All art supplies are included.

Maximum number of students: Grade 1-3, 50; JK/SK, 30; grade 4-8, 100

Preferred location: library or classroom, but am fine with anywhere that allows students room to both my presentation and art workshop (for JK-Grade 3).

Equipment: (Grades 1-3) projector, screen, glass of water, tables with enough seating for students for art workshop; (JK-SK) chair and table for circle time, tables and seating for students for two-station art workshop; (Grades 4-8), projector, screen, microphone for large groups

Contact Sidura 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:

      Meade, Suzanne. (Hamilton, ON.)

      Middle grade writer of Canadian historical fiction with strong female protagonists. Fan of stories about Newfoundland and disasters. Hackmatack Awards shortlist 2022, Diamond Willow Award finalist 2023.

      In-person rates: $250 for one session, $450 for two sessions, $625 for full day (three sessions) in person. Travel fee of $0.50 per km for visits outside of Hamilton-Wentworth and Burlington. Virtual session rate: $150. All sessions run approximately one hour.

      Suzanne has been a writer from a young age – as soon as she knew how to write, the stories started. She has always been excited by history and loves to write about little-known events, times, and places. She is an experienced elementary teacher who is comfortable in front of a classroom. She enjoys speaking to both children and adults. She can do up to three presentations in the same school or area in a day.

      Suzanne’s presentations are dynamic and involve lots of interaction with the audience. She enjoys talking about what inspired her to write, how she does research for her books, and all kinds of questions about her characters and stories.

      Suzanne’s presentations are geared towards Junior and Intermediate grade students (grades 4 to 8) although grade 3 students are also welcome. Sessions run about an hour. She shares some information and photos related to A Terrible Tide and answers questions from the audience. She is also happy to do short reading of a passage from the book if you would like.

      Suzanne is happy to present to both small and larger groups (100+). Smaller groups tend to have a more conversational style of presentation.

      Venues: Classroom, library, or other school locations are fine. Equipment required: Screen and projector with HDMI connection. Microphone for larger rooms. A chair or stool.       

      Contact Suzanne to book a visit:

            

        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:

          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:

            McKay, Sharon (Burlington ON)

            Writers’ Union Member. Sharon travels across Canada several times a year. Sharon E. McKay (Mick-EYE) writes fact-based fiction for young adults. Multi-awards, all ages.

            Flat fee of $900 for a full day, four sessions and includes a free (optional) brown-bag lunch for anyone interested in writing. Flat fee of $600 for an afternoon. Parents and media are welcome in all sessions.

            Virtual Visits: $150, 60 minutes, Skype. Continue reading “McKay, Sharon (Burlington ON)”

            Torres, J (Whitby, ON)

            Award-winning Filipino Canadian writer of comic books and graphic novels. Member of Writer’s Union of Canada, Canadian Children’s Book Centre, and Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators, and Performers. Middle grades. 

            Rates are $350 for one session, $650 for two, $950 for three, plus mileage. Classroom or library setting preferred over gymnasium or auditorium. Limit of 50 students per session (negotiable). Projector and laptop required for slideshow presentation. 

            Virtual rates: $200 for one session, $300 for two (within the same week).

            Best suited for grades 4 to 6, each session is approximately 45-60 minutes consisting of a brief intro, a reading (excerpt or short comic story), presentation on how graphic novels are made, and a Q&A at the end. Book sales and signings available upon request.

            J. has written for all the major North American comic book publishers including Archie, Dark Horse, DC, Image, and Marvel. He has also been published by Kids Can Press, Owlkids, Scholastic, and Tundra . He currently writes the Chirp comic in Chirp Magazine and the Adventure Comics motion comics for the DC Kids YouTube Channel. His graphic novels include Alison Dare (Eisner Award Nominee), Bigfoot Boy (Junior Library Guild Selection), Brobots (Kids Read Comics Award and Parents’ Choice Award), How to Spot a Sasquatch (Junior Library Guild Selection) , Lola: A Ghost Story (Aesop’s Accolade), Planet Hockey (Forest of Reading Honor Book), and Stealing Home (Forest of Reading Honor Book, Hackmatack Award Winner, nominated for Red Cedar, Bilson Award, and Sakura Medal).

            CONTACT J TO BOOK A VISIT:

              Kacer, Kathy (Toronto)

              Writers’ Union Member.Historical fiction and non-fiction, multi-award winner, and experienced speaker. Kathy’s rate in and around the GTA is $400 per session. HST and mileage charges are also applicable. Virtual Visits: $250 plus HST, 60 minutes, Skype/Google Talk Continue reading “Kacer, Kathy (Toronto)”