I am available to speak to your group if you live within driving distance of Columbus, Ohio, or pay for my travel expenses, or happen to be near a place I’m visiting. (Please note that my publisher will not reimburse me for travel. Some people have that misconception so I want to be clear.)
I can gear my topics to fit your needs. My usual fee is $100. Contact me for details. Here are some topics I’ve presented before.
Our Ellis Island Immigrant Ancestors
Learn the history of Ellis Island and some tips on how to find your Ellis Island ancestors.
The Single Irish Immigrant Woman
During America’s Golden Age of Immigration single Irish women came alone. Find out the reasons many emigrated and the manner in which they supported themselves during a time when other ethic groups came in groups.
Ancient Saints of Ireland
We will learn about the three patron saints of Ireland plus a few others of historical importance, and discuss the lives and legends of these people and how they have influenced Irish culture.
Irish Saints: Fact or Fiction?
What is known and proven and what is legend? And why does it matter? (Or does it?) We will look at the history of the ancient saints and discuss these questions. (Can be combined with Ancient Saints of Ireland talk described above.)
St. Brigid: Ireland’s Patroness
St. Brigid was Ireland’s first nun. There are many legends associated with her, some of which ended up my first novel, Brigid of Ireland. I never tire of talking about this 5th century woman who is part saint and part legend.
Making St. Brigid Crosses (along with the historical background)
This can be combined with my general talk on St. Brigid with an added fee per participant to cover supplies. We will use pipe cleaners because they are easy to learn with. Each participant will leave with a finished cross.
Ireland’s High Crosses
Ireland’s high crosses had many purposes for the ancient people, but one of the uses was for teaching. In ancient times the average person could not read, so stories were told with the crosses. In this workshop we will learn about some of the most famous crosses: Clonmacnoise’s Cross of the Scriptures and Monasterboice’s Muirdach’s Cross and more. We will hear some stories about how these crosses might have affected the lives of people in Ireland’s age of saints and scholars.
Getting Started on Your Irish Genealogy Research
Irish heritage has the reputation of being difficult to trace mostly due to the destruction of records during the Irish Civil War. However, there are records available. Learn how to get started on your Irish line.
Genealogy Resources for Novelists
If you are writing historical fiction are you using all the resources available to you? As an avid genealogist I’ve found numerous resources that are both helpful to my research and fun.
My Writing Journey
How I started down the path to becoming a published author, what inspires my writing, and where I see my career headed. Each one of my books has its own story. This is an often requested topic, so I’m listing it here. Certainly what I talk about changes a little every year.
Writing Workshops for Children
I am a former teacher and mentored with the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild for several years. I have also taught some workshops for Thurber House’s summer camps. Please contact me for more details.