Author Visits

Award-winning Author, Lisa Funari-Willever — 2017-2018 School Author Visits & Writing Workshops

Dates are being reserved for the 2017-2018 school year. Reserve your school’s date now!

Each year, author Lisa Funari Willever visits 60-70 schools across the United States and abroad inspiring and motivating students from Kindergarten through 8th grade. These visits are informative, entertaining, and interactive and because Lisa is a former teacher who once booked authors, they are extremely easy to plan. Once a date is selected, a School Author Visit packet will be sent and a full set of books will be donated to the school.

Click here to request a school author visit packet

From Author Lisa Funari Willever:

As a former teacher who once booked author visits, I understand how difficult it is to be the person responsible for planning a School Author Visit. Selecting an author than can connect with students and staff, while working with a school’s complex schedule is no easy task. While an individual may be an amazing author, it is difficult to know what kind of presenter he or she may be. I have hundreds of references and encourage schools to check out the program via the reference list. I also invite prospective schools to give me a call to discuss the program and answer any questions. I understand your concerns and I’m always happy to speak with teachers, administrators, and parents. I am proud to note that most of my schools are referred by other schools I have visited and my visits are an annual event in many districts.


For the upcoming school year, the fee will remain the same, $1295.00. For many schools located in New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania, there are no additional travel expenses. Minimal travel expenses are incurred for day trips out of the immediate area. Travel expenses apply for out-of-town visits and include hotel and gas/mileage or airfare. If three or more days are scheduled in one area, travel expenses are reduced. Smaller schools within the same area may split the day and share expenses.

Equipment Needed

Visits can be held in an auditorium, gym, all-purpose room, or library. Schools should have a laptop, projector, screen, table, chair, and a microphone available on that day. Lisa brings her presentation on a memory stick and books to be displayed.

Locations Available

A NJ author, Lisa visits schools all over the United States and has traveled to NY, PA, DE, VA, CT, OH, NV, SD, WV, SC, FL, AL, LA, IA, NE, and Japan and is always happy to visit new places. International visits are also available.

School Visit Itinerary

I believe it’s important to provide students and staff with an idea of how the publishing world works, share personal stories, divulge the real story behind some of my titles, and share bits of my life. To accomplish these goals, I share the story of the making of the Easter Chicken and the unusual manner in which my mother and I wrote this book. I then use a role play with four students to demonstrate how a book is published. In this activity, the editor tells the author and illustrator to, “Go back and fix it!” several times. This lets the students see that revising and editing is something everyone does, not just something their teachers have invented! Next, I share the real story behind Everybody Moos At Cows, my picture book that was featured on the Rosie O’Donnell Show. After they hear the story, I show a power point presentation with pictures from my childhood and pictures of my life now, including my firefighter husband and three children. Then with the book on the big screen, I read the story so they can see how my childhood Sunday rides turned into a book and how easy it is for them to write about their own experiences. Time permitting, there is a question and answer session at the end. Due to scheduling of lunches and specials and the energy level of the performances, schools may book 1-3 performances.

For repeat and annual schools, I provide presentations that focus on some of my other titles, including Chumpkin, picked as a favorite by Laura Bush and displayed at the White House and my chapter books, including Garden State Adventure and 32 Dandelion Court, both selected as New Jersey Battle of the Books.

Writing Workshops Available

Book Sale

Don’t worry about hunting down titles and ordering the right amount of books. Lisa handles all book sales and provides schools with an order form for all titles and offers a discount to all staff and students. A pre-visit sale and post-visit sale ensures that everyone has the titles they would like.

About Lisa Funari-Willever

In 2012, Lisa appeared on an episode of the Cake Boss and the NJEA is considering a Nicky Fifth animated series, with the pilot shot at the Carlo’s Bakery. Her books have won the Benjamin Franklin Award, been honored by Rosie O’Donnell and First Lady Laura Bush, and named to the NJ Battle of the Books in 2005-2006, 2007-2008, 2009-2010. She is married to Trenton Fire Department Captain, Todd Willever and the mother of Jessica, Patrick, and Timothy.


Click on a name to email them!

Tips For Planning A Memorable Event

  • If you are looking for a specific date, reserve a date for your school early. Dates are reserved on a first-come basis. Lisa makes every attempt to accommodate requests but peak times of the year fill up almost two years in advance.
  • Once a date is selected, share some of Lisa’s books with students. Share information about the Guest Young Author and Illustrator Contest.
  • When planning the day’s schedule, keep in mind that the presentation is very energetic. Most schools have 1-3 presentations to accommodate lunches and specials, and to ensure the last presentation is as lively as the first!
  • Distribute book order forms approximately 3 weeks prior to the visit. One week before the visit, simply mail all order slips to Lisa Funari Willever. Books will arrive on the day of the visit, signed and grouped by teacher. After the visit make order forms available for 1 more week for all staff and students who forgot to order or need additional books. Follow the same mailing procedure and books will be shipped to the school, FREE SHIPPING.
  • To build excitement, have students re-illustrate some of the stories to decorate the halls. Have some children change endings or add characters to Lisa’s stories.
  • Have students prepare some questions on index cards.
  • Once everything is planned, enjoy the day. Lisa is a professional speaker and wants you to enjoy the day, too!