Member Profile

Jessica Scott Kerrin

Photo: Krista Comeau

Jessica Scott Kerrin is a 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 published 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.

Considered an expert on what boys read, Jessica supports new writers by delivering tailored presentations about writing for boys at conferences and workshops and literary festivals as well as school presentations. She offers book club kits for schools outside of Nova Scotia, Canada, as well as writing mentorships. Jessica also freelances for travel magazines about her family’s outdoor sailing adventures aboard their boat, Cape Fear.

Phone number:
c/o Writers' Union of Canada

Publications

The Better Tree Fort. Groundwood Books, 2018
The Things Owen Wrote. Groundwood Books, 2017
The Missing Dog is Spotted. Groundwood, 2015
The Spotted Dog Last Seen. Groundwood, 2013
The Lobster Chronicles: Spit Feathers. Kids Can Press, 2013
The Lobster Chronicles: A Narrow Escape. Kids Can Press, 2013
The Lobster Chronicles: Lower the Trap. Kids Can Press, 2012
Martin Bridge: Onwards and Upwards. Kids Can Press, 2009
Martin Bridge: The Sky's the Limit. Kids Can Press, 2008
Martin Bridge: In High Gear. Kids Can Press, 2008
Martin Bridge: Out of Orbit. Kids Can Press, 2007
Martin Bridge: Sound the Alarm. Kids Can Press, 2007
Martin Bridge: Blazing Ahead. Kids Can Press, 2006
Martin Bridge: On the Lookout. Kids Can Press, 2005
Martin Bridge: Ready for Takeoff. Kids Can Press, 2005

Awards

Shortlisted for the Rocky Mountain Book Award for The Spotted Dog Last Seen, 2015
Shortlisted for the Manitoba Young Readers Award for The Spotted Dog Last Seen, 2015
Shortlisted for the John Spray Mystery Award for The Spotted Dog Last Seen, 2014
Shortlisted for the Best Children's Book Award, Canadian Library Association for The Spotted Dog Last Seen, 2014
Top 100 Books for 2013, New York Public Library for The Spotted Dog Last Seen, 2013
Eligible for National Public Readings Program :
Yes

WITS

Presentation Description

Jessica Scott Kerrin is a 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 published 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.

Jessica grew up on the Canadian Prairies, and although she enjoyed school, she had a terrible secret. She was a lousy speller. This made it tough because she really liked to write. It turns out that a lot of writers can’t spell, and Jessica figured this out when she got her first award for creative writing, back in grade three. On the trophy, her writing teacher had misspelled her name! Since then, Jessica tries, as much as she can, to write about experiences she finds funny, like that one.

Today, she lives with her family and their pet tortoise in downtown Halifax in a house that is close to 150 years old. The floors slope, and all the marbles end up in one corner, including the tortoise.

Presentation Length:
1 hour
Genre:
Children's
Grades:
3 - 7
Audience size:
30 - 100
Workshop Description:

Jessica’s classroom presentation to chapter book readers is a behind-the-scenes look at the daily experiences she chooses to write stories about. Her presentation lasts between 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the age group, and involves props, writing exercises and short readings. This is accompanied by images from her publications as well as video clips and personal photographs shown on Powerpoint. Jessica brings all her own equipment. In addition, she has developed teacher resources to accompany her school visits.

Jessica uses humour and poses questions to students about similar experiences they might have had that her main characters face. In so doing, she demonstrates how they, too, have had experiences worthy of writing about. In terms of curriculum outcomes, students will:

  • identify sources 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 all the stages of editing and good writing habits

Reported outcomes following her visit have included: 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.

Jessica has presented to over 150 schools across Canada and the United States.

Northern OAC WITS:
Yes
One session:
$150
Two sessions:
$300
Three sessions:
$400
Four sessions:
$500
One session:
$150
Two sessions:
$300
Three sessions:
$400
Four sessions:
$500
GST:
GST not applicable