Have Barry Speak At Your School!

On February 4, 2011 · Comments Off on Have Barry Speak At Your School!
Who Am I?
My name is Barry Deutsch. I’m the author and illustrator of the Hereville graphic novels, which are about “yet another troll-fighting 11-year-old Orthodox Jewish girl.” 

Hereville books have been awarded the Oregon Book Award, the Sydney Taylor Book Award, the Cybil Award, and the Oregon Spirit Book Award.

Hereville books have received seven starred reviews so far, including reviews from Publisher’s Weekly, Kirkus Reviews and School Library Journal. The first Hereville was described by a School Library Journal reviewer as “the best graphic novel of 2010 for kids. Bar none.”
I’m also part of the team of creators making the best-selling Wings of Fire graphic novels, based on Tui Sutherland’s prose novels. 

What’s In My Main Presentation
Kids love graphic novels! Kids are used to looking at books in the classroom, and watching cartoons or reading comics on their own time, but graphic novels combine the intensity of storytelling with the fun of images. They teach students to read, but more, to enjoy reading–which may be the most important skill of all!
At a typical school presentation, I speak between 40 and 60 minutes, depending on the school’s schedule. My presentation begins with a live drawing presentation in which I draw bizarre characters. I call on students and ask for suggestions about what the characters should look like–male or female, big-nosed or snub-nosed, with mohawks or flowing braids–so the students can see how I compose caricatures live. I also show kids face-drawing techniques they can put to use immediately.

The drawing demonstration is followed by a reading from one of my Hereville graphic novels, featuring student readers playing parts, and additional participation from the entire audience. The reading is illustrated with dozens of drawings from my book, projected on a screen.

The reading is followed by a slideshow, in which I discuss topics like how I became a cartoonist, where my ideas come from, and my creative process. I talk a lot about the importance of PRACTICE! And I talk about what it’s like collaborating on the Wings of Fire graphic novels.

My slideshow ends with an animated film of my drawing process at twenty times actual speed, so the students can see a drawing form from its first scribbly lines to the final shading on the leaves. 

After the slideshow, I take questions from the audience, and then (if time allows) do one or two more bizarre character drawings. It’s a presentation that students and staff will remember for years.

Classroom Workshops
I also have a classroom workshop. I demonstrate, working with suggestions from students, a character design exercise, which the students then try out on their own. Then I present a short (10 minute) slideshow in which I explain and demonstrate the basics of story structure in a four-panel comic strip (including an animated film of the process). After that, the students create their own comic strip for the remainder of the class period, while I walk around the class and give students feedback on their work.

Presentations For Younger Kids!
My presentation is designed for grades 2-8. But I also love talking to younger kids, adapting my presentation to have more of the “fun stuff’ that keeps smaller children engaged. I’d recommend having some blank paper handy — after talking to me, kids are eager to draw!

Audience Size and Fees
I have spoken to groups as small as 15, and as large as 400. My typical audiences are drawn from grades 3 to grades 8, but I’ve also spoken to younger kids, to high schools, and even to adult groups.

My speakers fee is $1000, plus travel expenses for schools outside the Portland, Oregon region.
The $1000 fee includes one or two presentations or workshops at your school (for instance, my presentation plus a classroom workshop, or doing my presentation twice). If you’d like more than two presentations or workshops, that will cost $200 per additional presentation or workshop. For example, if you’d like me to do my presentation, plus lead two classroom workshops, the total fee would be $1200. Another example: If you’d like me to present the slideshow twice and also lead four classroom workshops, the total fee would be $1800.
Fees for Multiple Schools
If multiple schools in an area have me speak at multiple locations on the same day, or on consecutive days, then there’s a discount! The fee will be $900 per school for two schools, or $750 per school for three or more schools.
Appearances via Skype or Google Hangout
I can also do my presentations via Skype or Google Hangout! The fee for a single live internet presentation is $100.

Free Presentations
I know that many schools don’t have the budget to bring in speakers – and that’s a shame, because author visits really can enrich kids’ experience. If you’re able to set up Skype or Google Hangout at your school, but don’t have the budget to pay for a speaker, I’d be happy to do a live online visit for free.
Also, if your school is located in or near Portland, Oregon, but you don’t have the budget for a speaker, I’d be happy to do a free in-person appearance in exchange for a ride to the school and back.

Contact me.
Please email me to discuss an appearance at your school.

Thanks for your consideration!




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School Visits
I love doing author visits, either in person or over the internet via Skype! Click here for information about having me speak at your school.