Visiting Author Workshops

Patti M. Walsh presents hour-long, hands-on workshops that engage middle-school students and their parents in themes presented in Ghost Girl. Workshops are introduced by and followed with brief readings from Ghost Girl. Participants are encouraged, but not obligated, to read the book. All materials are provided. Copies of Ghost Girl are available for purchase.

For Middle-Grade Students and Their Parents

  • Chart Your Own Immram
    Using drawn or traced pictures, participants will select 17 persons (real or imaginary) to accompany them on a journey (immram). They will identify a destination or a goal, challenges to achieving their goal, and islands of refuge where they can rest.
  • Family Histories
    What does your name mean? Where is your family from? Do you have any famous ancestors? Do you have a family story, legend, or a religious story of a journey? Participants will draw pictures or create collages related to family histories.
  • Amazing Labyrinths
    In this workshop, participants will solve mazes and trace a finger labyrinth, a technique that may help children relax or concentrate when they are sad, anxious, or scared.
  • Ghost Stories
    (Recommended for children who have read the book)
    Share favorite ghost stories by drawing them or creating collages. This will lead to a discussion of the ghosts in Ghost Girl and the meaning of the title.
  • Creating Magic with Thaumatropes
    (Recommended for children who have read the book)
    A thaumatrope is an optical toy made by attaching a disk with a picture on each side to string. When the string is twirled between the fingers, the two pictures appear as one. Participants will make a thaumatrope and use it to discuss magic in Ghost Girl.

For Adults

  • Death—The Celtic Perspective
    (Recommended for adults who have read the book.)
    Readings from Ghost Girl will focus on an overview of theories and beliefs of the afterlife, with particular attention paid to the Celtic Otherworld. The discussion will include references to The Celtic Book of the Dead, by Caitlín Matthews, especially the motif of the Immram. Participants will be encouraged to compare and contrast the Celtic perspective with other traditions and religions.
  • Talking to Your Child About Death
    (Recommended for adults who have read the book.)
    The protagonist of Ghost Girl struggles with understanding why her mother died. In this discussion, parents and teachers can discuss how to talk to middle-grade students about death and dying. There are no right or wrong answers.
  • Bullying, Prejudice, and Other Social Problems
    (Recommended for adults who have read the book.)
    The protagonist of Ghost Girl faces and overcomes bullying, peer pressure, prejudice, and other situations faced by kids in today’s world. In this workshop, parents and teachers are encouraged to role-play and talk about these and other topics, and how Ghost Girl can launch discussions with middle-grade students.
  • The Straight and Curvy Path of an Indie Author
    Unlike traditional publishing, independent publishing requires not only a good story, writing skills, and self-motivation, but also hands-on knowledge of editing, proofreading, book design, marketing, web design, bookkeeping, and more. This workshop offers an overview of resources; costs; and independent publishing options and platforms, like Amazon KDP, IngramSpark, BookBaby, and Draft2Digital.

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply