Author Visits

Bring me to your school for an author visit!

Download my brochure
and the The Glow Stone teacher’s guide.

Here’s a bit about me:
I have published close to sixty books for young readers.

My short stories won two Hopwood Awards from the University of Michigan.

A seasoned children’s book editor, I have 20-plus years’ experience working for Scholastic, William Morrow, Dial Books, Simon & Schuster and other major publishers.

I have given presentations, writing workshops, and assemblies at elementary, middle, and high schools in the tri-state area.

I help young writers find their voices and believe in their work. Student writers deserve the same attention that professional editors give their authors!

Teaching is a passion for me, and I will be delighted to share my enthusiasm for writing with your students!

How will your students benefit? They will:
…discover how much they have in common with published authors when it comes to the struggles and joys of becoming better writers.

…have the unique experience of learning from an award-winning writer who is also an editor of books for young people.

…receive my constructive feedback and guidance in revising their work.

…learn where they, too, can find an audience for their work, in the numerous magazines that publish stories by children and teens.

…laugh at my rejection letters, and find the truth in that old saying, “Genius is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration”!

You can book me for…
A Single-Day Visit

This exciting, interactive program will motivate your students to become better writers. Here are two possible plans for a single-day visit:

1. I will meet individually with up to 5 classes for 45 minutes each. These sessions will begin with a discussion about my life as an author and editor in the exciting world of publishing! I will touch on the influences that shaped me along the way, and the persistence it takes to improve as a writer–whether you’re a student or a professional. Finally, I will engage students in a writing activity that can become a springboard for a more developed written piece.

2. I will give a 45-minute assembly presentation using Power Point overheads and anecdotes to tell students about my work. The assembly will be followed by up to four 30-minute class visits for Q&A.

Please don’t hesitate to ask me about customizing a program for your school!

A Week-long Residency

This is the optimal experience for student writers! I will visit the same five classes each day for a week, working one-on-one with students to help them develop a piece of writing. In the weeks following my residency, students can continue revising and polishing their pieces. On a designated day I will return to school for a publishing party with the classes, and a discussion of how students can find a magazine or other venue for publishing their work.

Donation Events

Please contact me for more information.

Here are a few of the programs I offer:
*NEW WORKSHOP!* Writing for Self-Discovery and Self-Expression How do writers connect with ideas that come from deep inside them? In this classroom workshop I talk about my own process, and share techniques that students can use to write authentically. Starting with a centering exercise, I ask students to imagine themselves in a place where they feel completely comfortable and relaxed, and to write a description of it. Time permitting, there will be time for a follow-up writing exercise. The session ends with sharing time. The focus of this workshop is process rather than product, though if done as part of a multiple-day residency, students may work toward a finished story. Grades 5-12

INTERDISCIPLINARY: Fiction Rocks! This classroom session invites students to make connections between creativity and scientific inquiry. I begin by discussing the research I did for my novel The Glow Stone, about a girl who loves collecting rocks and minerals and who gets lost in a cave. Students will participate in a hands-on science workshop, examining and testing rock and mineral specimens, and learning about caves and the rock cycle. A brief writing exercise wraps up the session. Fiction Rocks! reinforces state standards for late elementary and middle-grade science. Grades 5-9

UPDATED! Living to Tell the Tale: This assembly program gives students an up-close look at my life as a working writer. Using a PowerPoint presentation and engaging personal anecdotes, I offer students a clear picture of the dedication and hard work it takes to write manuscripts and then to find publishers for them (including the rejection letters scattered along the way!) I then engage the students in a writing exercise that gets them to think about their lives and what they might really want to write about. Grades 5-9

For more information on my programs and fees please contact me by e-mail at

Testimonials from Teachers, Librarians, and Administrators:
“Ellen conducted a wonderful writer’s workshop as part of our library’s summer reading club. Fifteen pre-teens wrote for hours, inspired by her stories and words of encouragement. All of the kids seemed to sense that she understood their need to write and they produced volumes for her!” Jennifer Burkholder, Children’s Librarian, Hilton Branch Library, Maplewood, NJ

“Ellen Dreyer helped bring out the best in our seventh and eighth grade students, who were riveted by her reading from The Glow Stone and persuaded her to read more. They engaged in a discussion about favorite books and authors with her eagerly. Ellen’s ability to connect with young people came through clearly, and her respect and admiration for their ideas made for a rich and memorable author visit.” Nancy Workman, Psy.D., Faculty, Manhattan Country School, New York, NY

From Students:
“You have inspired me to start writing my own book.” Efrigjend, Collegiate Institute for Math and Science

“I felt the fear Phoebe had when you read to us how she crawled through the narrow cave, it’s like you feel closed in like any minute you’d stop breathing. It’s amazing how long it took you to write this story, I would never imagine me doing such a thing because I give up so easily.” Jordan, Collegiate Institute for Math and Science

“Your dedication inspires me to never give up in life.” Carlos, Collegiate Institute for Math and Science

“….I really liked…that you opened up to us about your personal experiences and told us about your different inspirations and your family, etc. I can honestly say you inspire me more to become a writer. Since meeting you, I’ve noticed that I do a lot more free writing than I had before.” Gisselle, Christopher Columbus High School

About my Videoconferences:
“I loved participating in the videoconference! I saw it do amazing things for my students.” Lesley Gibson, Teacher, Dallastown Area Middle School, Dallastown, PA

“We really appreciate everything you did create a tailored program for our students and your feedback for student writers was wonderful!” Heather Weisse, MAGPI, Applications Coordinator

“School Notes” From The Times-Tribune, Scranton, PA, Feb. 7, 2008:

“Through live video conferencing, seventh-grade language arts students [at Riverside Junior-Senior High School] were introduced to Ellen Dreyer, author of ‘The Glow Stone.’

Ms. Dreyer guided the students in pinpointing significant events in their own lives that could be used as a springboard for creating fiction. She fielded questions from students and guided them through a writing activity that tapped into their memories and their five senses to set up some very compelling stories.

For more information on my programs and fees please e-mail me at

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