jennifer oconnell visit2What age group is best for your talks?

I have given presentations to groups ranging from pre-kindergarten to adults. I can easily tailor the talk to the audience. I am often requested to give presentations to pre-k through fifth grade in elementary schools. I have also presented at middle schools and to families at the Shenandoah Valley Discovery Museum, The National Museum of Natural History, Saturday at the National Theater, William and Mary College and many libraries.

I have given presentations and been on panels for adults at the Shenandoah Children’s Literature Conference, The Virginia State Reading Association, Virginia Festival of the Book, The Maryland Association of School Librarians, Maryland Association of Outdoor and Environmental Educators, The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, The Smithsonian Resident Associate Program, The Corcoran Gallery/Illustrators Club of Washington DC, and The Children’s Literature Centre at Frostburg State University.

How long is your presentation?

Presentations are generally forty-five minutes. I need fifteen minutes between sessions to reorganize and prepare for the next group. The question and answer period can be extended if time permits.

How many presentations will you give in a day?

I am happy to conduct up to three presentations in a day.

How can we best prepare for your visit?

Reading or showing my books to the children beforehand is an excellent way to familiarize them with my work and create excitement and anticipation. This will also encourage the students to think of questions they may want to ask during the presentation. That said, it is also okay if time doesn't allow for this as I read them the book as part of the presentation. 

What about book sales?

It is particularly meaningful for the children and their families to have a book sale with my visit. A sale can also help offset the speaking fee. A book order form can be downloaded and printed. Books can be ordered from several online sources. (See the book section). You can also help support your local independent book seller! Often a ‘consignment’ arrangement can be worked out where any unsold copies can be sent back to the publisher.