Author/Illustrator VisitsExperience: I have done programs with children since my first Artist-in-Residency in an elementary school in 1976. I have worked with grades K through 12, tailoring my talks to the appropriate age level. I also teach writing courses for adults at Writers & Books and have addressed professional conventions. Prior to becoming a full-time author and illustrator, I was employed in public television, academia, and advertising.
Publications: I have written and illustrated two picture books, Pumpkin Jack (2000) and Apples Here! (2002). Both were published by Albert Whitman & Company. I am currently working on a third book for them.
I have also written two science fiction novels for adults and young adults. Cretaceous Sea (November 2002) and Sea of Time (January 2004) are both published by Ace Books.
My Talks: My slide lecture for elementary students concerns how a picture book is created from the initial idea to the final product. I emphasize how the creative process works, the different functions of words and pictures, and the various steps in the publishing process. I start off my talk with samples of books I did in elementary and high school to show how the level of my artwork was much closer to the students' in the beginning. I do not read my books during the lecture, and it is best if the students are familiar with them beforehand. I end each lecture with a question and answer session.
My talk to middle school and high school students will vary according to needs of the audience. There are several possibilities: I can discuss the creation of picture books. This is a more sophisticated version of my talk for elementary school students. I can talk about writing and illustrating as a career. I can talk about the process of creative writing, drawing upon my own work for examples. In this lecture, I emphasize the importance of character and setting to story development, the storytelling process, and the pleasures of working with language.
Equipment: I use slides throughout my talk and need suitable facilities for projecting them. A room that can be darkened is essential. If you own a projection screen and a slide projector that accepts Kodak Carousel slide trays, I would prefer to use them. Otherwise, I can make arrangements to obtain these items.
Fee: I charge $500.00 for a school visit within Monroe County, New York or an adjacent county. Fees for more distant locales are higher and will include travel expenses. This fee includes one or two lectures. If there are to be two lectures, they must be scheduled no more than an hour apart. If you would like me to sign books, I will be glad to do so.
Availability of Books: Copies of my books may be purchased directly from the Customer Service Department of Albert Whitman & Co. (1-800-255-7675). Schools can purchase books for author visits at a 40% discount. These books are returnable if they are in salable condition - undamaged, unsigned and not sticker priced. Allow a minimum of three weeks for delivery. I usually have a small number of books on hand for sale, but I must charge full price for these, plus sales tax.
To contact me: My mailing address is:
42 Weider Street
Rochester, NY 14620-2114
My email address is: