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“One second grade teacher told me that her students were so excited about writing after the presentation, that she dropped her original lesson plan to give them a chance to write. She said that the students (remember these are 2nd graders) continued writing for about 40 minutes until they were forced to stop because it was lunch time. Teachers who walked in for the session with ‘I have so much to do’ faces, would turn to me during the presentation and say, ‘Best presentation EVER!’”

Pamela Dus

Media Center

Scott Elementary School, IN

“Kristi Valiant does an awesome job!  She teaches the children about the illustration process; characters; and plot; and she does this in a way that is very engaging to the children.  Our school purchased some of her books to sell to the families, and she signed the books with a cute illustration and message.  Mrs. Valiant truly puts her best work into her visits!”

Rhea Isenberg

Library Media Specialist

Thelma B. Johnson Early Learning Center, KY

Presentations (30 - 60 min)

I will inspire your students to read, write, draw, and create!

I’ll show them my drawings from when I was in elementary school and how I progressed through the years. I’ll walk your students through the steps of how a book is created and published using my own manuscripts, sketches, and revisions as examples. They’ll receive an inside peek at the hard work that goes into creating books. I’ll encourage them not to give up; publishing can be difficult, but it’s possible to become published authors and illustrators someday if they revise, revise, revise! I’ll perform a live drawing demonstration as we design a new character together. Then we’ll create a story in an interactive way for that character by using a common plot structure for picture books. We’ll cover techniques such as character growth, growing tension, conflict, and resolution. The school may keep my drawings. My presentation is educational, interactive, and will help students come up with new characters and ideas to write their own stories.

Usually the students are so excited to revise the story we make up together. If possible, please schedule time for them to write or draw in their classrooms on their own as soon as the presentation ends. One great exercise would be for each student to revise the story we created in their own way, and then switch written stories with a classmate to draw each other’s story.

I prefer 45 - 60 minute presentations with grades three through six and 30 - 45 minute presentations with kindergarten through grade two, but I’m open to other options. What I’ve found to engage students best is to meet with one grade level at a time in a media center with the students sitting on the floor in rows close to me. Large presentations in a gym are fine as well.

I ask that schools offer students the opportunity to buy some of my books before my visit. I will autograph, write the child’s name in fancy letters, and draw a little illustration in each book the day of the school visit. I have a sample book order form on the top left of this webpage and details on discounts and more below.

Please provide:

• An agreed-upon honorarium delivered on the day of the school visit. Please send me any forms to fill out beforehand.

• A schedule of the day at least a week in advance. Please allow 10 - 15 min breaks for me in between presentations plus a time to autograph books. Please have names to whom books are to be autographed clearly written.

• If I’m there through lunchtime, please provide lunch. I’m glad to dine with the teachers, staff, or selected kids who are especially interested in writing or illustrating. A potluck lunch with the teachers is always welcome.

• An easel, paper, and thick, new markers (Crayola are fine) to perform the live drawing demonstration. Schools may keep the drawings.

• Water to sip throughout the day and a small table for my books and props.

• I can email a powerpoint or pdf file ahead of time of my presentation, so you can have it set up and ready for me.

  1. A microphone is requested for groups larger than a single class size, so I don’t lose my voice before the end of the day.


One hour presentation plus book signings in the Evansville-area: $300

Half School Day including book signings in the Evansville-area: $550

Full School Day including book signings in the Evansville-area: $750

Full School Day including book signings for visits over 30 miles from my home (zip code 47725): $900

Add on a family night event to a school day visit: +$300

Transportation and lodging expenses (if needed) will be covered by the school unless I happen to be visiting that area, such as Fond du Lac, WI where I have family. IRS rate for auto travel.


The key to a successful author/illustrator visit is to build excitement by familiarizing the students, parents, librarian, classroom teachers, and art teacher with my books before the event. Read my books in class before I come. Create an art project or classroom project based on one of my books. Send home an info sheet and book order form to parents. Make sure each classroom has access to my books, my bio, and my photo from

Ordering Books

You can customize my Sample Order Form from my website to send home with your students before my visit. You can send a reminder a few days before the orders are due. Then when you receive back the forms, you can order those books plus a few extra for any late-comers directly from the publisher or from your local bookstore. Allow time for shipping the books. Schools will generally receive a discount on the books ordered. You may decide whether to pass that discount on to your students to allow more students to be able to afford books, or to charge the students full price and keep that discount amount as a fundraiser to help pay for the author visit.



Simon & Schuster offers a 40% discount and free shipping for schools and libraries in conjunction with an author/illustrator visit. 10 unit minimum.

1-800-976-1726 or 1-877-989-0009

CORA COOKS PANCIT: Paperback: 9781885008480

Lee & Low offers schools either a 50% discount and free shipping for non-returnable orders or a 45% discount and 7% shipping for returnable orders. To order from Lee & Low (either paperback or hardcover): 212-779-4400 x 32




Penguin Random House offers a 40% discount and free shipping for schools and libraries in conjunction with an author/illustrator visit. 1-800-733-3000


To order from Albert Whitman & Co: 1-800-255-7675

Local Bookstores: Instead of ordering directly from the publishers, local bookstores may offer you a discount and help with additional sales (and it’s great to support local bookstores).

Contact Me

To contact me about a school visit, please email me at

kristi at (without spaces and use the @ character)

with as much information as possible - tentative dates, an idea of what you’d like me to do, the timeframe, and your contact info (name, organization or school, address, phone, email). I look forward to meeting your students!

Customizable Book Order Form (Word doc):


High-resolution Photo of Kristi (3 MB jpg):


CORA COOKS PANCIT Teacher’s Guide: