Events

Now Booking for 2020-2021

I love to talk. About writing! I can hold forth on any number of subjects, for all types of audiences, and would love to come visit your students or group. Please contact me with your event and dates, and let me customize a presentation for your budget and your audience.

Sample Workshops & Presentations:

Historical Costuming & Storytelling: Dressed in period costume, I walk audiences through the ways historical garments inform my writing and my characters, including research and writing tips for writers of historical fiction. Suitable for all age groups. Ideal for cons and festivals.

Seeing Like a Storyteller: A fun, guided brainstorming session that helps young writers tap into their imaginations and use sensory details to craft a story from the ground up. Customizable for various ages, especially suitable for younger audiences.

Fairytales & Retellings: In this hands-on session, kids break down the bones of a familiar story and rebuild it into a new, but recognizable version. We’ll talk about the enduring power and adaptability of myths, fairytales, and legends, and discuss the importance of sharing Own Voices stories. All ages.

Worldbuilding: This half-day workshop delves into the art and craft of creating rich, authentic worlds for our stories—no matter the genre. Recommended for writers of both fiction and nonfiction. Suitable for older students and adults.

Plotting and Revision: A hands-on examination of story structure, plotting and outlining techniques, and how to make the book on the page match the book in your head. Developed for adult writers and older students, but adaptable for younger audiences, as needed.

Research for Novelists: My books are jam-packed with eclectic and obscure research, which is half the fun for me as an author. Learn how I mine history for the fascinating, delightful, bizarre, and inspiring details that I use to build my stories and make me excited to share the past with my readers. I’ll also talk about balancing historical with fiction, particularly when writing for kids, and when and how to fudge the facts. Versions for both school groups and writers’ workshops.

Making: Adapted from my Morris Award acceptance speech, this inspirational talk shares my love of creating and the power of being a Maker with kids and teachers, including the valuable lessons that a life of Making can offer—from problem-solving and how to organize a project, to dealing with perfectionism and overcoming disappointment. Perfect for Makers’ groups!

And Many More…

Upcoming Events

Johnson County Library Writers Conference, November 15-17, 2019 (Overland Park, KS)

Planet Comicon, March 20-22, 2020 (Kansas City, Missouri)

San Diego Comic-Con (TBA)

Past Venues

  • American Library Association
  • YALSA
  • International Literacy Association/International Reading Association
  • San Diego Comic-Con
  • Kansas Book Festival/Kansas Notable Books
  • Planet Comicon
  • Children’s Literature Festival
  • SCBWI
  • Kansas State University
  • Missouri Library Association
  • Mountain Plains Library Association
  • WisCon
  • World Fantasy Convention
  • Kansas City Comic Con