General Info
Q & A


When I was little, I wanted to be a children's book author and illustrator when I grew up. My dream did come true. My books have won numerous awards, and are available all over the United States and all over the world.

I share my love of writing and illustrating, and I share my life and inspirations when I visit schools.


I love to inspire students and teachers. My programs are interactive and
tailored to grade level. In my programs, I discuss how I got started, including showing a book that I made when I was in the fourth grade. I stress keeping sketchbooks/journals and I share mine. I shed light on the writing process, from concept to finished book. I will read from my work. Then I do a unique presentation on character creation that will enlighten and inspire students to draw their own characters with my help. I always encourage questions and stress individuality, not "perfection."


My program works best for grades K-5, but I am happy to talk to all grades, and adults, too. (I have given Teacher Inservice Programs.)

I will either do four one-hour presentations in one day (The hour does not include the time for students to get settled and to exit the room.) meeting with groups of "like-grades," IE: intermediate with intermediate, primary with primary... OR I can do an "all-school assembly" with power point slide show, followed by two one-hour workshops: one with primary students and one with intermediate students. In the second option the students get to meet with me twice.

Groups can be as large as the space will comfortably accommodate, but smaller groups are always better. (This is mostly for the workshops. The "all-school assembly" will be in whatever large space is available.)

I will require an easel with large pad of paper or poster board, a microphone (clip-on is preferred), 2 long tables placed end-to end, a chair and bottled water. For the "all-school assembly" I will need an AV cart with power strip and extension cord and a screen to project onto. If I travel by air, I'll need to borrow a projector.

Students need to bring paper (unlined copy paper is fine), one drawing tool: pencil for older students and crayons for K & 1, and something to lean on like a clip-board or lap-board. (Especially if the floor is carpeted.) Upper grades should also bring paper to take notes as well as paper for drawing.

Please set aside time for book signing. I don't just "sign" the books; I draw in them, too. It is best to have me sign before and after the presentations and during part of lunchtime. It can take a while, so the students should not line up and watch. I will stay at school until every book is signed. I will sign all books, even books previously owned. (As long as they are MY books- I've been asked to sign "other" books, like "The Lion King" before!)

I can't sign pieces of paper, or shoes, or clothing- you'd be surprised what I've been asked to sign. But I will be happy to make a bookmark at school that will be a memento of the day. The school can copy it on cardstock and keep the original.

Extra events like Evening Parent slide shows and "Books and Breakfast" can be arranged. I'm always happy to be flexible.


Please discuss Honorariums with me. Once you send me a message I will give you my phone number and we can talk. I have a standard speaking fee for full-day visits and half-day visits. Two nearby schools can split one day. I will give a discount if multiple schools are booked within one district/area/city.

Travel expenses are usually paid by the school, including: hotel, rental car (if needed), airfare, and a stipend for meals if I am away from home.

More than two hours of driving (from home) requires reimbursement for miles at the standard government rate.

Over two hours of driving (one way) requires an overnight stay.

Over three hours of driving (usually) will require air transportation.

Please note: it is always worthwhile to try to get other schools in your area to coordinate visits and share costs.


Please send me an email through this website on my CONTACTS PAGE or you can email me at: nladen(at) or you can message me through my page on Facebook Or my book's fan-page on Facebook.


"What fun it was to have you at View Ridge in March! You were a fabulous presenter and truly touched our students in many different ways. They still speak your name with much affection, and dog drawings manage to pop up all over the building. As we count the days until a new book is published, your other books continue to be read over and over again. Thank you for giving so much of yourself while you were here. Students, staff and parents were thrilled to have met you. We have decided you are truly a "work of heart" that now has a View Ridge Fan Club." -Linda Spoor, LMS, View Ridge Elementary