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Author Visit Podcast
49 minutes | 4 days ago
14. Talking to Students about Social Emotional Learning with Susan Verde
Bonnie and Shanda interview New York Times Best Selling Author of the I Am Series, Susan Verde, about her author visit philosophy surrounding social emotional learning (SEL). Susan Verde, is the New York Times Best Selling Author of the “I Am” series (which were illustrated by Peter Reynolds): I Am Human, I Am Yoga, I Am Peace, I Am Love and I Am One, along with many other books and a brand new book called THE TOSSY-TURNY PRINCESS AND THE PESKY PEA! A fairy tale to help you fall asleep! (illustrated by Jay Fleck). Fun fact: Susan and Shanda happen to have the same literary agent! Let’s get to it! … Questions we asked Susan: To start, tell us about your new book and how you came up with the topic of sleep for this one? Ok Susan, can you give us an overview of what you typically do during a school visit and what about it is uniquely you? Similar to Bonnie, many of your books fall in the social emotional learning (SEL) category which is a hot topic these days! What’s your SEL philosophy when presenting to kid readers? Has your visit schedule been pretty busy this year in light of the pandemic? Did you offer virtual visits? How did that go for you? Has a student ever brought up something uncomfortable? How did you / would you handle that? As an educator, mother, and school presenter, what do you see as the biggest SEL need/gap right now? Any thoughts on how to bridge that gap? Did I just imagine this or did you once tell me you used to be a kindergarten teacher?! How has that experience affected you as a presenter? Do you consider yourself more of an introvert or an extrovert? How does that play into your visits? How many school visits do you typically like to do a year? Before we wrap up, do you have any last tips for our listeners (authors, educators) about school visits or SEL? This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to this episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Kid book review by Beni McCloskey (6). Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with affiliate links that help support this podcast): The Tossy-Turny Princess and the Pesky Pea: A Fairy Tale To Help You Fall Asleep by Susan Verde (Author) and Jay Fleck (Illustrator) The Three Little Yogis and the Wolf Who Lost His Breath: A Fairy Tale to Help You Feel Better by Susan Verde (Author) and Jay Fleck (Illustrator) I Am Human by Susan Verde (Author) and Peter Reynolds (Illustrator) I Am Yoga by Susan Verde (Author) and Peter Reynolds (Illustrator) I Am Peace by Susan Verde (Author) and Peter Reynolds (Illustrator) I Am Love by Susan Verde (Author) and Peter Reynolds (Illustrator) I Am One by Susan Verde (Author) and Peter Reynolds (Illustrator) Laxmi's Mooch by Shelly Anand (Author) and Nabi H. Ali (Illustrator) Diary of a Pug: Paws for a Cause by Kyla May Thanks for listening to this episode of the Author Visit Podcast!
30 minutes | 21 days ago
13. Online Platforms & School Visits
Bonnie and Shanda interview elementary school media specialist, Jennifer Lewis of Indian Knoll Elementary School, about her experience and expertise with Microsoft Teams as a virtual author visit tool. Jennifer Lewis is the media center specialist for Indian Knoll Elementary school here in Canton, GA. This is her 24th year teaching and 10th in the media center. She’s been with Indian Knoll since the school opened ten years ago. She is very involved with the Georgia Library Media Association as part of the communications committee and she serves as their Library Media Specialist of The Year chair. Jennifer enjoys presenting at conferences and is a “Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert.” She was also the 2018 Georgia Library Media Specialist of the Year. We’re really excited to have her here with us on the podcast today and we can’t wait to hear more about all the interesting things she’s involved in. So welcome Jennifer to the podcast! Hi Jennifer! You are kind of a big deal! I was very impressed with you and Indian Knoll when I did my virtual author visit back in February. Tell us a little about you and your school and what your favorite role in education is. I love collaborating with the teachers at my school to promote reading and teach their grade level standards! I plan lessons with teachers to support these goals.” I work at the best school ever! We opened ten years ago and our school has always had the best community and felt like family. Many of the teachers who opened the school are still here and many of the families are also. I remember when many of our current students were born! I absolutely love my job because it is always interesting and I never have the same day twice. My job is a challenge every day in trying to serve my students and teachers the best way I can. I love collaborating with the teachers at my school to promote reading and teach their grade level standards! I plan lessons with teachers to support these goals. You’ve told us that you are a presenter at conferences like the GALILEO and ISTE conferences. Tell us about those and what sort of topics you cover. This summer, I am presenting at the GALILEO Annual Conference and ISTE. My session at the GALILEO conference is about using the ebooks found within GALILEO to support standards and to personalize learning. My sessions at ISTE are about using Minecraft: Education Edition and using our learning management system to engage learners in the school library. I absolutely love learning new things at conferences and being a presenter often allows me to attend conferences I wouldn’t be able to go to otherwise! I learned when I visited you that Indian Knoll is a “Microsoft Incubator School” And you are working towards being a “Microsoft Showcase School.” Tell everyone what that means! My school is currently a Microsoft Incubator School. We have been working all year to raise our status to Microsoft Showcase School. We will apply for that this summer. Showcase Schools are basically schools that Microsoft recognizes for exceptional use of Microsoft technologies and dedication to education transformation. Part of this has been our use of Microsoft Teams. We have six digital teachers who use Teams for their daily instruction of students who are learning from home. All of our teachers used Teams when school was closed due to covid. And all of our staff has used Teams for parent conferences, IEP meetings, hosting guest readers, faculty and department meetings, author visits, technology help, etc. With everyone using Teams so much, it helps that teachers know Teams so well and are able to navigate it easily when we have big events like author visits. It has also been a great platform for including our digital learners who are at home. They can connect and be a part of what is going on at school.) You obviously use Microsoft Teams for a lot of different purposes. Do you see yourself using it as an option in the future even when we can go back to in-person gatherings? Maybe a hybrid approach to author visits? I have grown to LOVE Teams! It helps us connect to people we would not otherwise have been able to connect to in ways we wouldn’t have been able to. So I definitely think (and hope) that we will continue to use Teams for author visits even after the pandemic. Previously we used Skype to meet with authors we couldn’t see in person. But Teams allows more participants so we can include students learning from school and from home and it has a chat feature so that students and teachers can post their questions. And the teacher can vet questions before they are asked. 😆 One thing I have learned this year is that I need to make sure I teach kids what behavior is expected and appropriate during Teams author visits just like I would for an in-person visit. I hope that in-person author visits don’t completely disappear! Having an author visit the school is pretty powerful to kids. But Teams offers a good alternative to in-person visits. How do you choose authors to come visit your school? (And specifically how did you hear about Bonnie?) The best way to learn about authors who visit schools is from colleagues. I am part of a lot of librarian groups online, and I often see posts where librarians share great authors they have hosted. I heard about Bonnie from a colleague who hosted her earlier in the year. She raved about Bonnie’s program and shared all of the positive feedback she received from her students and staff. Also, our district is in the process of developing a social emotional learning curriculum so the theme of Bonnie’s books fit that perfectly. Having a colleague who has hosted an author before is helpful because they can give me helpful information for when I host the author. For example, my colleague who hosted Bonnie first sent me an email that she sent to her staff telling them what to expect and some different Teams tips. I was able to customize that email for my staff instead of drafting an email from scratch. How do you raise funds for author visits? Book Fairs? Other? Our book fairs are our main fundraiser! So that is usually where author visit fees come from. However, a colleague told me about how she received a Literary Events of Georgia Grant to cover Shanda’s fees. So I applied for that grant when I reached out to Bonnie about visiting my school. It was a very easy grant to apply for and completely covered the fees. I have applied for other grants to pay for authors’ fees, but this is the first one I have gotten. What is your opinion as a librarian on what makes a GOOD/ successful author visit? Any particularly memorable author visit moments? Any catastrophes? A good author visit begins at the school with me! My job is to prepare students and teachers for a visiting author. Having an author means so much more to the kids when they are familiar with the author and his/her books. So I always spend time with my students doing read alouds, sharing the author’s biography, and sometimes even purchasing books for the teachers’ classroom libraries before the visit. Author visits run more smoothly when they author and I have communicated well beforehand. I like to know from an author what their technology requirements are, their maximum number of students they like to have in one session, what drinks/snack they love. And of course, an engaging program is important as well! I love the programs where authors have a program that keeps the kids’ attention through a story, a picture, a game, or something like that. I know it’s been a good author visit if the kids bring me stories and pictures inspired by the author and if the author’s books stay checked out for the rest of the year! Bonnie’s program for Taste Your Words is an example of a memorable author visit! Bonnie does a Bean Boozled challenge based on the flavors of the words in Taste Your Words. The kids LOVED that! And now all of Bonnie’s books have been checked out of our library or placed on hold since then. One memorable moment in an author visit was when we hosted David Biedzrycki. He is the author/illustrator of Breaking News Bear Alert, Sumo Kitty, and many other books! Before the kids arrived, he asked me to pose for a photo. Then he used his software to put my photo in the presentation. It was the part of the presentation where he was reading his book to the kids. When he got to the slide with my picture, the kids went nuts! I had read the book to them before his visit and they knew I was not supposed to be in the book! 😆 David is such an amazing presenter that he is able to get the kids back very quickly so they weren’t loud for too long! Fortunately, I have not had any catastrophes! Do you offer the visiting author’s books for sale at your visits? How does that typically work? And how do you feel about Author Visit Central now that you’ve used it? We always offer for students to purchase our visiting authors’ books. My principal is very supportive of this. I have done this in several different ways, ranging from using a local independent bookstore to having the author ship books directly to the school and sign when he arrives. When we hosted Bonnie in January, that was the first experience I have had with Author Visit Central. I absolutely loved it! Everything about Author Visit Central is designed to make book sales easy. I was first impressed by the beautiful, clean flyer you sent. And all sales were done online, so I didn’t have to handle any money at all. That is definitely a plus because it always scares me when parents send in money with little guys. Because we are local, Bonnie dropped the books off at my school. And I already had a list of students who were supposed to receive books ahead of that so I knew what to expect and delivering them was a breeze. So I would definitely use this service again. Media specialists always have a million things to do at any given time, so we appreciate everything that can save us a little time! When you used Author Visit Central when Bonnie virtually visited, I noticed that your school families purchased a very nice number of books compared to others we’ve done in this area. How did you promote it? Whatever you did worked! Wow! That is great! I don’t know if I did anything special! My school’s families have always been supportive of literacy promotions like author visits and the book fair. But I did several things to promote book sales. First, like I mentioned before, I promoted the books in my lessons and told kids “You can get your own copy of this book signed by the author!” If the kids have heard the books before and know how awesome they are, they are more likely to ask their parents to buy them. The beautiful flyer you created was a huge help in promoting book sales. I made copies of the form and sent it home. I also created a couple of displays where I made posters out of the flyer and the book covers and hung those in places where they would be seen by a lot of people. And last, I posted several announcements in our learning management system and on social media. The more ways we can get the message out, the better! Using your crystal ball and looking through the lens of technology, how do you see authors and schools working together in the future to create mutually beneficial relationships and memorable visits for students? There are so many things I have done differently in the past year because of covid protocols that I have thought, “Wow, why didn’t I always do it this way?” and I think Teams author visits are definitely one of those things. I also think that having a virtual relationship with an author might lead to a deeper relationship because it’s so easy to communicate online. Like the kids can send messages to an author via the teacher to have their questions answered. Or the kids can be early readers of an author’s book and show the author how their books are being used in classrooms. Is there anything else you would like to add to our discussion today? I want to let you know how much I have enjoyed this podcast! Even though I’m probably not your intended audience, I have learned so much listening to you both! It has been helpful for me to hear about author visits from your perspective because it helps me prepare better! Wrap up Quote: Alvina Ling, senior editor at Little Brown Books For Young Readers, recently said on her podcast, Book Friends Forever episode 89, that “doing school visits is the single one best thing an author can do to help themselves”. This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to our 10th episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Kid book review by Matthias from Sonoraville Elementary! Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with affiliate links that help support this podcast): Tornado by Betsy Cromer Byars (Author) and Doron Ben-Ami (Illustrator) AuthorVisitCentral.com
30 minutes | 2 months ago
12. What is Author Visit Central?
Bonnie and Shanda talk with Ben McCloskey, (Shanda's husband) the co-creator and web developer of AuthorVisitCentral.com, about the service it provides and the gap it closes when it comes to selling books for an author visit. If you are an author, illustrator, librarian, educator, PTA parent, book seller, etc. and you have questions about Author Visit Central, feel free to contact Ben and Shanda at: firstname.lastname@example.org This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to our 10th episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Kid book review by Beni (6 years old). Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with affiliate links that help support this podcast): The Gumazing Gum Girl! Chews Your Destiny by Rhode Montijo The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires AuthorVisitCentral.com
43 minutes | 3 months ago
11. What Librarians WANT
Cohosts, author-illustrator Shanda McCloskey and author Bonnie Clark have a conversation with elementary school librarian and media specialist, Beth Mitchell, about what makes an author visit fantastic and memorable (from her point of view). Beth has been a media specialist for 11 years starting in South Carolina and then moving to GA. She has an outstanding husband and is the proud mother of two sweet little girls. Who they love reading with. Beth is a "dream big" kind of librarian. She loves working alongside teachers and students to make dreams realities. In 2014 she brought Jan Brett to her school after winning an international contest! At her current school, she has brought in multiple authors, illustrators, and storytellers like, Peggy Eddleman, Shanda McCloskey, Tim Lowry, Jerry Pallotta, John David Anderson, and Bonnie Clark. You can get in touch with Beth at: email@example.com This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to our 10th episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Kid book review by Paisley (3 years old) Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with affiliate links that help support this podcast): Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin (Author) and James Dean (Illustrator) Groovy Joe: Ice Cream & Dinosaurs (Groovy Joe #1) by Eric Litwin (Author) and Tom Lichtenheld (Illustrator) Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion (Author) and Margaret Bloy Graham (Illustrator)
36 minutes | 5 months ago
10. Beyond the Basic Visit
Cohosts, Shanda and Bonnie have a conversation with non-fiction STEM author Erin Twamley all about how she approaches school visits differently! Erin Twamley lives in Alabama, but has worked all over the world to create a new generation of Everyday STEM Superheroes. As an author and educator, her hands-on STEM encounters and nonfiction children’s books engage the next generation in protecting and creating a sustainable planet. In 2018, she established ErinEDU, an educational consulting group with a mission to cultivate curiosity and ask questions by sharing the adventures of diverse professionals in STEM Careers and six STEM Superpowers. And she just had a new environmental kids book released called: CAPTURING COW FARTS AND BURPS You can find Erin at: ErinEDU.org Twitter: @STEMsuperheros Facebook: @STEMSuperhero This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to our 10th episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with affiliate links that help support this podcast): Capturing Cow Farts and Burps by Erin Twamley Everyday Superheroes: Women in STEM Careers by Erin Twamley and Joshua Sneideman Climate Change: Discover How It Impacts Spaceship Earth by Erin Twamley and Joshua Sneideman, illustrated by Mike Crosier Renewable Energy: Discover the Fuel of the Future with 20 Projects by Erin Twamley and Joshua Sneideman, illustrated by Heather Jane Brinesh We Are In A Book! by Mo Willems
22 minutes | 6 months ago
9. Getting Gigs
Cohosts, author-illustrator Shanda McCloskey and author Bonnie Clark, share how they got their very first school visit gigs as well as more ideas to bring in business! This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to this episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with affiliate links that help support this podcast): Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin Shannon Miller's blog: The Library Voice
34 minutes | 7 months ago
8. Bonnie's Double School Virtual Experience
Author and co-host, Bonnie Clark shares her recent experience of virtually visiting two schools. What went right and what went wrong. You can find us at ... BONNIE: BonnieClarkBooks.com Facebook and instagram: @bonnieclarkbooks Twitter: @bonclark SHANDA: ShandaMc.com Facebook & Twitter: @ShandaMcCloskey Instagram: @shandamccloskeydraws This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to this episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with some affiliate links that help support this podcast): AuthorVisitCentral.com Taste Your Words by Bonnie Clark, illustrated by Todd Bright Catching Thoughts by Bonnie Clark, illustrated by Summer Macon Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales by Nathan Hale
59 minutes | 8 months ago
7. Interview with author-speaker couple, Chris Barton and Jennifer Ziegler
Joining us today for an interview is not one, but two incredible authors, Chris Barton and Jennifer Ziegler, who have made a lovely life together of Texas living, family, and author/speaking careers! Chris Barton is an avid school speaker and a New York Times Best Selling Author! His work includes an extensive list of starred and award-winning children’s non-fiction books such as: Whoosh! Lonnie Johnson's Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions, illus. by Don Tate and What Do You Do with a Voice Like That? The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan, illus. by Ekua Holmes. And fiction books too like: Shark vs. Train, illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld and Fire Truck vs. Dragon, illustrated by Shanda McCloskey (which is how I met Chris!). Jennifer Ziegler writes for tweens and teens. Her books include YA novels such as How Not To Be Popular, and MG novels like The Brewster Triplet Series: Revenge of the Flower Girls, Revenge of the Angels, Revenge of the Happy Campers, and Revenge of the Teacher’s Pets! And she, too, is very comfortable in front of students delivering curriculum-enhancing presentations and writers workshops to students and adults. Listen to the episode to hear each of their answers to the following questions... First of all, Chris, I know that you (for several years) created a steady stream of income visiting like 100 schools or more each year, correct? Did you do that also, Jennifer? How did the pandemic hit/affect/change you both as creative professionals? What are each of you offering in the realm of school visits, currently? I recently attended a webinar with Kate Messner about reinventing school visits for our current situation, and attendees were offered the chance to suggest one of our books for Kate to use as an example. So, I submitted our new book, Fire Truck vs. Dragon which as you know came out in March. And she used it! She put the cover up on her screen under the words: “TEAM UP”. And she went on to suggest how easy it would be (now) to do a virtual school visit together! And what a rare/wonderful opportunity a school could have hearing from both the author AND the illustrator of a book at the same visit? Or even if scheduling was an issue, she brought up the idea of exchanging short videos with each other showing our processes (writing or illustrating) that we could share on our own separate visits. Does any of that sound fun to you, Chris?? Do you guys have any (psychic) insight to the near and distant future of author visits? Fun question: What’s the craziest question a kid has ever asked you or what’s the craziest thing that has ever happened during one of your school visits? (One time a kid threw up in the middle of my talk :) Here's a question from a fellow Austin based book creator (Rivkah LaFille). Do you know her? She’s a writer, illustrator, and graphic novelist that I recently met and admire SO much. She recently caught up on all the Author Visit Podcast episodes, but still had a burning question … How do authors prepare for that moment when they stand up and actually start speaking? Do you sit down and visualize how it's all going to go and write down exactly what you plan on saying like a script? Do you do an outline with bullets but leave it loose within that outline to let the discussion go wherever? Or do you fly entirely by the seat of your pants? Or something else Fun question: What is it like to be married to an author? Do you work in a shared space? Do you critique each other? Jennifer, I hear you’re teaching a writer’s workshop THIS Saturday (September 5th), correct? Can you tell us a little about that and how we can sign up? Questions from GA school librarian (Beth Mitchell): Did you guys ever meet an author or illustrator as a child? How do we keep a love of reading alive right now in our technology drenched, socially-distanced society? We offer online reading through outlets like SORA, and there is EPIC, thankfully. How do we encourage parents to embrace their role as students’ first readers? Does that make sense Do you have any final advice for us authors and/or educators regarding school visits or anything else? You can find us at ... CHRIS: ChrisBarton.info Twitter: @Bartography Instagram: @bartographyatx Facebook: link can be found on website :) JENNIFER: JenniferZiegler.net Facebook: @jennferziegler Twitter: @zieglerjennifer Instagram: @jzstories BONNIE: BonnieClarkBooks.com Facebook and instagram: @bonnieclarkbooks Twitter: @bonclark SHANDA: ShandaMc.com Facebook & Twitter: @ShandaMcCloskey Instagram: @shandamccloskeydraws This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might enjoy it too! Thanks for listening to this episode of the Author Visit Podcast! Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with some affiliate links that help support this podcast): "Write Before You Write" webinar with Jennifer Ziegler (Saturday, September 5, 2020) Shark vs. Train by Chris Barton, illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld Fire Truck vs. Dragon by Chris Barton, illustrated by Shanda McCloskey Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson's Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions by Chris Barton, illustrated by Don Tate ¡fushhh!: El Chorro de Inventos Súper Húmedos de Lonnie Johnson by Chris Barton, illustrated by Don Tate The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch by Chris Barton, illustrated by Don Tate All of a Sudden and Forever: Help and Healing After the Oklahoma City Bombing by Chris Barton, illustrated by Nicole Xu Mighty Truck: The Traffic Tie-Up by Chris Barton, illustrated by Troy Cummings Sass & Serendipity by Jennifer Ziegler How Not to Be Popular by Jennifer Ziegler Revenge of the Angels: A Wish Novel by Jennifer Ziegler Revenge of the Happy Campers by Jennifer Ziegler Revenge of the Teacher's Pets by Jennifer Ziegler Revenge of the Flower Girls (Brewster Triplets Series) by Jennifer Ziegler The flowchart Chris uses to direct his planning efforts with schools and libraries:
43 minutes | 8 months ago
6. Four Ways to Sell Books at School Visits
Bonnie and Shanda countdown 4 of their favorite ways to sell books at in-person or virtual author visits for "traditionally published" books. Below, you will find our discussion along with each book sale method mentioned listed with pros, cons, and sample sale fliers to model your own after if you like. #4 - Bookshop.org #3 - School's local bookstore #2 - Author's local bookstore #1 - AuthorVisitCentral.com Resources and books mentioned in this episode (with some affiliate links that help support this podcast): Reinventing the Author Visit Webinar with Kate Messner AuthorVisitCentral.com Beatrice Zinker Upside Down Thinker (Book 1) by Shelley Johannes Beatrice Zinker: Incognito (book 2) by Shelley Johannes Beatrice Zinker: Sabotage (book 3) by Shelley Johannes Narwhal and Jelly by Ben Clanton Super Narwhal and Jelly Jolt by Ben Clanton If you’ve ever performed a school visit or hosted one at your school, you know that selling books can be a complicated ordeal when the author is traditionally published and we are going to try to explain why… First off, let’s compare traditional publishing, self publishing and everything in between... Writer’s Digest says: “Traditional book publishing is when a publisher offers the author a contract and, in turn, prints, publishes, and sells your book through booksellers and other retailers. The publisher essentially buys the right to publish your book and pays you royalties from the sales.” Self-publishing, hybrid publishing, vanity publishing all have completely different business models and profit margins compared to traditional. Different rules. Different perks. We are not talking to these types of authors today. Now, let’s talk about book sales at school visits for traditionally published authors. These authors are not book sellers (or are not supposed to be), and from what I understand, publishers don’t even want their authors selling books regularly (it’s in a lot of our publisher contracts) for a few reasons… Nielsen Bookscan numbers - When we purchase discounted copies of our books from our publisher or Author-Author.net and resell them, those sales are not being “counted”. Traditionally published authors NEED every book sale to be counted, not only for our royalties so we get paid, but for the future of our careers! The counts from our previous books can determine if a publisher will take a chance on us for another book. So it’s not something to take lightly if this is a career choice for you. And most likely it is if you’ve gone through the obstacle course of getting traditionally published in the first place. And then there’s the NYTimes best selling list numbers. It won’t matter if you sell a million books on your own if they are not officially counted in the Neilsen book scan. There is also a lovely codependency built into the publisher/bookseller/author business model and relationship. We all need each other for a rich existence. We look out for each other. If I take the sales from the bookstores around me for all my school visits, I would be missing many opportunities for making various booksellers aware of me. They are buying and hand-selling books to their communities. They can’t order all the books in the world, but after a connection with you (even thru a third party) they are much more likely to carry YOUR books on their shelves and for telling others about your books, school visits, and possibly suggest inviting you to conferences, festivals, etc. in their area. And I DO NOT want to keep and manage a stock of books or front the money to do so! Seems kinda silly though for authors not to be encouraged to sell their own books, after all, a sale is a sale and there’s not an indie bookstore in every town. And then it gets really hairy when you talk with the comics world! As the comics’ world (which is driven hugely by authors selling their own work at conventions) collides more and more with the literary world in the form of graphic novels, things get more complicated. Each of these worlds use to operate separately for along time, but as they overlap more and more - things get messy. Anyway, I digress... So here's the countdown! Our 4 favorite ways to sell books at school visits, so here we go... #4 - Bookshop.org: Use Bookshop.org to place one bulk book order for in-person or virtual visits... This method would require the school to send out the order form and have families turn it back in to the coordinator with cash or check, then the author would place the order on Bookshop.org with their own account and money, shipping to the school. The author would collect the money from the school after the visit. Pros: Author can know the status/track order Ships straight to school Easily understood process Supports indies … somewhere Cons: Author has to pay up front for the books to be reimbursed weeks later Not much discount, if any Librarians must collect forms, money and do accounting Author has to do accounting too Sample flier: #3 - School's local bookstore: Use the school’s local bookstore to place one bulk book order for an in-person or virtual visit for students learning at school... This method requires the school to coordinate with their nearest bookstore, send home an order form to be returned with cash or check (unless the bookstore could set up a special ordering link), and then pick up the books from the store or pay for shipping to the school. Pros: Sometimes savings of up to 20% off, so books are cheaper for families or can earn nice money for school Author doesn’t have to lug a bunch of books to school, easy travel Supports local bookstore Cons: Someone Has to create flier Librarian has to coordinate with the bookstore Librarian has to collect money and forms, and do accounting Librarians may have to physically pick up the books from the bookstore or pay shipping Author may have to mail book plates for virtual visits Sample flier: #2 - Author's local bookstore: Use the author’s local bookstore for virtual visits when students are learning remotely from their homes: This method is perfect for getting signed books sent to individual students’ homes because some or all the students attend school remotely. It basically gives families a link to the author’s bookstore that the author can easily drive to to sign purchased books before they ship out. Pros: Supports local bookstore Easy on Librarian- doesn’t have to collect forms and money, do accounting, or distribute books (because books ship to homes) Better not to deal with cash during pandemic, kids can't lose the money, easy purchasing online No minimums required Author doesn’t have to ship out orders Can be used in combination with any of the other methods if you have a mix of learning types Cons: Someone Has to create flier Author has to coordinate with the bookstore about the sale and signing before the books ship out Expensive for families- My bookstore offers no discount this way, retail plus shipping Sample flier: #1 - AuthorVisitCentral.com: Use AuthorVisitCentral.com for a virtual or in-person visit when students are learning at school... This method is one we invented! (So we may be a bit biased.) It’s designed to be easy on everyone involved - it takes the accounting out of the school, has a built-in buying incentive that gives back to school, and supports a local indie in the school’s area. It also represents the author in a professional way! Pros: Easy on Librarian- doesn’t have to collect forms, money, and do accounting Easy to set up by author (very little leaning on librarian) Supports indie bookstores Nice flier generated for you Better not to deal with cash during pandemic, kids can't lose the money, easy purchasing online Earns a little money for the school (up to $1 per book, ordering incentive) No book returns or pickups needed. Books ship to schools. Assured Professional appearance Author doesn’t have to lug a bunch of books to school No minimums required Cons: Small discount compared to other methods Students have to be at school for this method to work for delivery of books Author may have to mail book plates for virtual visits Author may be on the line for paying shipping if not enough books are sold to qualify for free shipping. (Every publisher has a different threshold for this, so it's hard to put a blanket number on it.) Sample flier: You can find us individually at: BONNIE: BonnieClarkBooks.com Facebook and instagram: @bonnieclarkbooks Twitter: @bonclark SHANDA: ShandaMc.com Facebook & Twitter: @ShandaMcCloske Instagram: @shandamccloskeydraws Find us both at AuthorVisitPodcast.com where we love to hear directly from our listeners! Feel free to leave comments or even ideas for future topics you’d like us to cover. This podcast is sponsored by AuthorVisitCentral.com and produced by Ben McCloskey of EngineIndustries.com. And if you enjoyed this episode, please rate and review us on Apple Podcasts and share it with others who might dig it! Thanks for listening to this episode of the Author Visit Podcast!
40 minutes | 10 months ago
5. Presenting To Teens
Bonnie and Shanda discuss the interesting nuances of presenting to teens and high school audiences with guest young adult author, Christi J. Whitney, https://christijwhitney.com/. Books we mention in this episode (with some affiliate links that help support this podcast): Grey by Christi J. Whitney Shadow by Christi J. Whitney Midnight by Christi J. Whitney Catching Thoughts by Bonnie Clark Snow and Rose by Emily Winfield Martin (paperback) Snow and Rose by Emily Winfield Martin (hardcover)
39 minutes | 10 months ago
4. Designing Your Presentation: 3 Ingredient Recipe
Aimed at authors/illustrators new to school visits, Bonnie and Shanda discuss several types of author presentations you can do and gives examples of each: Book specific Topic specific Process specific and combinations Shanda talks about the 3-ingredient recipe that helped form her own successful author presentation, and Bonnie tells about a super fun/gross activity she's excited to try at her next presentation about speaking kind words. Resources and books mentioned in this episode with affiliate links (that help support this podcast): "Preparing Your Perfect Presentation", a course from KidLit Creatives. Use code: AVPTHANKYOU for 10% off! Dirt Cheap by Mark Hoffmann Taste Your Words by Bonnie Clark Catching Thoughts by Bonnie Clark Doll-E 1.0 by Shanda McCloskey (Scheduled to be back in stock early September 2020.) T-Bone the Drone by Shanda McCloskey
50 minutes | 10 months ago
3. Where to Begin
Cohosts Bonnie and Shanda, discuss WHY they do school visits, WHAT school visits might be like in the fall (predicted by librarians), and HOW to get started by thinking through a few logistics. Resources discussed in this episode: Book by Kim Norman Sell Books and get PAID doing Author School Visits Virtual Author Visit Etiquette Poster https://vanmeterlibraryvoice.blogspot.com/2020/05/i-can-zoom-buncee-posters.html Highlights Workshop on Creating Author Visits https://www.highlightsfoundation.org/12473/guest-post-andrea-j-loney-three-tips-for-awesome-author-visits/ Creating Engaging School visits Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/122633751263332/ One Resource for selling books at a school visit https://www.authorvisitcentral.com/ Lee and Low's "How To Host A Successful Virtual Author Visit" Webinar Recording: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=58synKLBGgo&feature=youtu.be Thanks for joining us! Next time will dive into designing your presentation(s).
45 minutes | a year ago
2. Amplify Black Voices with Books, Speakers, and Actions
Co-hosts Bonnie and Shanda, and guest Tosha Sumner (a.k.a- T.L. Sumner) discuss racism and small ways we can begin to move forward to foster positive change and uplift black voices as librarians, teachers, educators, authors, illustrators, booksellers, parents, and people. Books mentioned in this episode: Just Like Me by Vanessa Brantley-Newton I Love Me! by Laronda Gardner Middlemiss, illustrated by Beth Hughes Brown Sugar Babe written by Charlotte Watson Sherman, illustrated by Akem The book links above are affiliate links that help support our podcast.
29 minutes | a year ago
1. It's the Author Visit Podcast!
Shanda and Bonnie introduce themselves and lay out what can be expected from the new Author Visit Podcast. We had a great first podcast recording! Sure, we are learning this platform as we go, but all-in-all, we are super excited to start this venture with you! Here is a list of books mentioned in this episode and affiliate links: Taste Your Words by Bonnie Clark Catching Thoughts by Bonnie Clark Doll-E 1.0 by Shanda McCloskey T-Bone the Drone by Shanda McCloskey Fire Truck vs. Dragon written by Chris Barton and illustrated by Shanda McCloskey Bedtime Ballet written by Kallie George and illustrated by Shanda McCloskey Unsolved Mysteries of Nature by Heather L. Montgomery
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