I have toured with my books in the United States, England, France, and Germany. As a former teacher, I love getting back in schools and reading to children. It’s the most rewarding part of being an author.
“Presbyterian School hosted author Terri Sabol for a half-day presentation with our Early Childhood classes. She was astute in understanding the needs and love of story time with our PK3, PK4 and Kindergarten students. Parents, students and teachers enjoyed her visit. She used a variety of props and projection to help convey her stories to such a young audience. We loved our time with her!”
~ Leslie H., Presbyterian School Librarian
Why are author visits to schools important?
Meeting an author in person can be a life changing experience for a child. It makes the writing process, reading books, and the authors themselves accessible and real to students. Author visits can motivate writing, promote reading, encourage risk taking and passions, and validate teachers.
Do you offer virtual visits?
Yes! During a pandemic, or even in regular times when paying extra travel fees to the author might prevent your school from having an author visit, a virtual visit is a great alternative. I have all the equipment on my end needed, including the ability to share my screen for a pdf of my book. I can also share behind the scenes photos. The teacher can collect questions from students ahead of time to send me so I can talk about my books or the writing process in a tailored way.
I can also collect book orders to personalize and sign for students. Depending on the school’s location, I can hand deliver them to the school or mail them to the school for the teacher to distribute, ahead of the virtual visit or after. For the 2020-2021 school year, I have reduced my one hour virtual visit fee to $100. Please email me at email@example.com. for more information or to set up your virtual visit.
What is your message?
My Oscar and Emmy Series was created to promote compassion to animals, inform people about rescue and adoption, inspire people to do something related to rescue (adopt, foster, volunteer, or donate), and entertain children by showcasing my two adorable kittens. I use dogs and cats interchangeably when I talk about rescue and adoption and my informational fiction series.
My other books, beginning with Green With Envy, inspire children to find what makes them special and unique, and how to use that to help others.
Do you offer different programs for different grade levels?
Yes. I have spoken to every age level from 12 month olds to 12th graders. Even though the Oscar and Emmy series is in picture book form, the realistic pictures appeal to all ages. I also check for understanding as I go, especially with the younger students. I am able to tell behind the scenes stories since I work closely with my illustrator and book designer. I adjust my presentations carefully to suit a range of grade levels and attention spans. Programs usually range from 30 to 60 minutes, depending on age/grade level and the needs of the school.
Grades PreK-1 (30-45 minutes)
I read any one of my books in completion. I check for understanding at each page. If time, I show them real pictures of Oscar and Emmy (if reading from the Oscar and Emmy Series) or give them behind the scenes info. There can also be a short Q&A.
Popular books for this age group include Oscar and Emmy Get Rescued, Oscar and Emmy Visit Grandma, and Green With Envy. Coloring page samples are provided that can be copied to hand out to students. This can be extended into an optional writing activity.
Grades 2-5 (45-60 minutes)
I read any one of my books in completion. I discuss the book process from the idea to publishing, including my collaboration with the illustrator and book designer. There will be a Q&A at the end. With the 60 minute option, I can share some actual pictures which inspired the illustrations.
Popular books for this age group include Oscar and Emmy Get Rescued, Oscar and Emmy Weather a Hurricane, Oscar and Emmy Visit the Vet, and Green With Envy.
Oscar and Emmy Get Rescued is very educational in that it teaches compassion for animals and promotes rescue, adoption, spay and neuter, and microchipping. Oscar and Emmy Weather a Hurricane is great if your school is in an area that has potential natural disasters (hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes). In Oscar and Emmy Visit the Vet, students learn about vet check ups through the eyes of children and what they can do at home in between visits to help keep pets healthy. Green With Envy has the puns that older students will enjoy, the illustrations that younger students will love, and a twist ending that will have everyone laughing. There is also a theme of jealousy and appreciating what they have.
Grades 6-12 (60-90 minutes)
When I read my picture books to the older students, I ensure that they are engaged. I give a more in-depth look at behind the scenes, and talk about how Photoshop is used when creating a book. I can also discuss how social media is used to promote the book. I talk about how my first illustrator was only 16 when I hired her for my first book and how the students can work hard to develop their talents and have a good work ethic. I discuss the book writing process from idea to publishing. I touch on how I make a living as an artist and how I use my skills I learned in college and in my earlier career as a teacher.
What equipment is required for in-person author visits?
If I am reading to ~75 students or less at a time, then I can just read from my book and don’t require technology. I prefer a library setting.
If I’m reading to more than ~75 students in grades Pre-K to 5th or any amount in grades 6-12, then the school should provide:
- A laptop/computer (for my thumbdrive), a projector, and a screen. (I bring my own presentation clicker.)
- A microphone for larger groups (preferably a lapel mic) if the acoustics aren’t good.
How do we order books and will you sign them?
Book signings are an important part of an author’s visit. It gives students a personalized souvenir of meeting an author. There is an approximately $3 discount to books bought through me instead of from Amazon. I sell them at my events for $10 including tax. They retail for $11.99 plus tax on Amazon.
There are 3 ways to handle books sales:
- Families pre-order my book through a form letter (which I will provide) sent home by the school in advance. Then, on the day of the visit, I will bring the personalized and autographed books to send home with the student.
- Families order my book directly from Amazon. On the day of the visit, they send the book with the autograph request form to school with the student so I can personalize the book and send it back home.
- The book order form can be sent home the day of the author visit for families to pay for and order a book through me. I will drop off the personalized books or ship them to the school a few weeks later.
If book sales are not allowed per your school or district guidelines, there will be a small increase in my rate.
How does a school contact you to schedule an author visit and how much does it cost?
If you would like to schedule a visit, or if you have additional questions about my programs, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After I receive your correspondence, I will provide my half day and full day rate for the current school year. If you live within 60 miles of Richmond, Texas, I waive the normal travel charge.
Travel and lodging expenses will apply outside of these areas. If I can book multiple schools in the same area, this extra cost can be shared between those schools. Two nearby schools can share the full day rate if they are able to work the schedule where I am able to make it to both schools in the same day.
I have a one-time group presentation option. This is limited to 45 minutes. This is often ideal for a store, library, scout troop, etc.
I generally start booking visits 6 months in advance, and requests are first come, first served.
Do you offer single presentation options?
If you are a library, scout troop, home school, etc. and are looking for a single 45 minute to 1 hour presentation for your small group, please contact me for options.
Do you offer anything for Spanish-speaking students?
My first book has a bilingual edition: Oscar and Emmy Get Rescued, Oscar y Emmy son rescatados. I will read the book both in English and Spanish. I will require a translator for the Q&A or any extra dialogue with the students.
I look forward to hearing from you!