Jessica Scott Kerrin

Jessica Scott Kerrin

Author
Halifax, NS
Awards

Blue Spruce Award (Short-listed, 2019)

Rocky Mountain Book Award (Alberta's Readers' Choice Award) (Short-listed, 2015)

Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Award (Short-listed, 2015)

John Spray Mystery Award - Canadian Children's Book Centre (Short-listed, 2014)

Book of the Year for Children Award - Canadian Library Association (Short-listed, 2014)

Best Books of Exceptional Calibre - Canadian Children's Book Centre (Short-listed, 2014)

New York Public Library's Top 100 Children's Books (Short-listed, 2013)

Hackmatack Award (Atlantic Canada's Readers' Choice Award) (Short-listed, 2014)

Best Books of Exceptional Calibre - Canadian Children's Book Centre (Short-listed, 2012)

Best Books of Exceptional Calibre - Canadian Children's Book Centre (Short-listed, 2010)

Best Books of Exceptional Calibre - Canadian Children's Book Centre (Short-listed, 2009)

Hackmatack Award (Atlantic Canada's Readers' Choice Award) (Short-listed, 2009)

Best Books of Exceptional Calibre - Canadian Children's Book Centre (Short-listed, 2008)

Best Books of Exceptional Calibre - Canadian Children's Book Centre (Short-listed, 2008)

Hackmatack Award (Atlantic Canada's Readers' Choice Award) (Short-listed, 2008)

Notable Books List - American Library Association (Short-listed, 2006)

New York Public Library's Top Books of 2005 (Short-listed, 2005)

Genres

Beginning Readers, Early chapter books, Junior fiction (Ages 8-12), Intermediate Fiction (Ages 10-14), Picture books

Biography

Jessica Scott Kerrin is a Canadian children’s writer who is best known for her fiction books for boys, including an eight-book series called Martin Bridge, a trilogy called The Lobster Chronicles, two mysteries called The Spotted Dog Last Seen and The Missing Dog is Spotted, her new adventure novel, The Things Owen Wrote and her first picture book, The Better Tree Fort, which will be offered in multiple languages. Literary critics from Horn Book, Kirkus Starred Reviews, School Library Journal, the Toronto Star and the Globe and Mail claim that she adds much-needed male protagonists to early chapter-book readers.

Her work has been a finalist for the Book of the Year for Children Award by the Canadian Library Association, the John Spray Mystery Award (Canadian Children’s Book Centre), the Manitoba Young Readers Award, and Atlantic Canada Children’s Choice (Hackmatack) Awards. Her work is also included in the New York Public Library’s Top 100 Children’s Books, the Association of Canadian Publishers’ Top Grade Canlit for Classrooms, Best Books of Exceptional Caliber by the Canadian Children’s Book Centre, Best of Books by Horn Book, the Junior Library Guild Premier Selection and the Notable Books List by the American Library Association.

Jessica’s initial bucket list included having an astronaut autograph her first book about rockets. Having accomplished that feat, she’s now added new items to her bucket list like having her stories translated into many different languages, seeing her work performed on stage or on screen, and meeting a published young writer whom Jessica  helped inspire as part of a school book tour. That would be awesome!

Born and raised in Alberta, she completed a degree in political science and psychology from the University of Calgary. She then moved to Halifax to study at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. Upon graduation with a fine arts degree, she later completed a graduate degree in public administration from Dalhousie University. She now resides in downtown Halifax, surrounded by shipyards, fog and historic cemeteries, where she writes full time.

Presentations
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Presentation and Reading for Children

About Jessica’s presentations

Jessica’s jam-packed presentation to young writers is a behind-the-scenes look at the everyday experiences that she writes stories about. She includes props, audience participation, a short reading and video clips sure to keep students engaged and glued to their seats. They will learn how to identify sources around them for creative inspiration, understand how brainstorming works to launch a writing assignment, discover how to take an idea and shape it into a story, and develop an appreciation for editing and good writing habits.

Reported outcomes following her visits include an increase in library borrowing, an enhanced understanding of the writing process, a surge in creativity, and, the application of new techniques for creative writing. Often, students will declare that they'll be writers when they grow up, too!

For K-3: Her new picture book, The Better Tree Fort, will be featured and it has been nominated for a 2019 Blue Spruce Award. Jessica shares an interest in birding with the characters in her story, and she will include a fun mini-lesson on local birdsongs during her presentation.

For 4-6: Her latest (2018) travel mystery, The Things Owen Wrote, will be featured, having garnered considerable positive reviews. In this story, Jessica explores the relationship between a boy and his ailing grandfather.

Maximum number of students per session: 40 – 200 (flexible)

Preferred venues: library or auditorium work best

Equipment requirements: The venue will provide a table for Jessica’s equipment, a microphone for groups over 100, and a screen or whiteboard. Jessica brings the rest (her own projector, speakers, and laptop).

Presentation type: Workshop

Recommended levels: Primary (1-3), Junior (4-6)

Fees: $300 for one 45-60 minute session, $550 for 2, $750 for 3 and $900 for 4, plus $50 per session to help defray travel costs.

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Presentation for Adult Writers (various topics)

Jessica is a dynamic and accomplished speaker and is considered to be an expert on writing for boys. She offers presentations and workshops for adults on the following topics:

  • Creating characters for young male readers
  • The importance of conflict
  • Cultivating story ideas
  • How to write a series
  • Location, location: why setting matters
  • Writing habits, time management and you

Jessica has presented across Canada and the United States, including the International Readers’ Association  conference, the annual conference for the Canadian Society of Authors, Illustrators and Performers, and the annual conference for the Association of Teachers of English of Nova Scotia.  She has taught writing workshops in partnership with the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia. In addition, she has served as a judge for many national and Atlantic Canadian writing competitions, including the 2014 Governor General Award for Children's Text.

Presentation type: Workshop

Recommended levels: Not applicable

Fees: Negotiable fee plus travel expenses