Skype with an Author on World Read Aloud Day 2016!

Hi there – and welcome to the World Read Aloud Day author Skype volunteer list for 2016!

If you’re new to this blog, I’m Kate Messner, and I write books like these:

Ranger #3 Final CoverHow to Read a StoryLink to Up in the Garden and Down in the DIrtLink to All the Answers

I also read lots of books, and reading aloud is one of my favorite things in the world. When I was a kid, I was the one forever waving my hand to volunteer to read to the class, and still, I’ll pretty much read to anyone who will listen.

For the past few years, I’ve helped out with LitWorld’s World Read Aloud Day by pulling together a list of author volunteers who would like to spend part of the day Skyping with classrooms around the world to share the joy of reading aloud.

World Read Aloud Day 2016 is Wednesday, February 24th!

Unfortunately, I’ll be traveling to a conference in Missouri on that day and won’t be around to Skype myself, but I promise to share a special video read-aloud here on that day, so bookmark this page &  you’ll be able to share that with your students!

The authors listed below have  volunteered their time to read aloud to classrooms and libraries all over the world. These aren’t long, fancy presentations; a typical one might go like this:

  • 1-2 minutes: Author introduces himself or herself and talks a little about his or her books.
  • 3-5 minutes: Author reads aloud a short picture book, or a short excerpt from a chapter book/novel
  • 5-10 minutes: Author answers some questions from students about reading/writing
  • 1-2 minutes: Author book-talks a couple books he or she loves (but didn’t write!) as recommendations for the kids

If you’re a teacher or librarian and you’d like to have an author Skype with your classroom or library on World Read Aloud Day, here’s how to do it:

  • Check out the list of volunteering authors below and visit their websites to see which ones might be a good fit for your students.
  • Contact the author directly by using the email provided or clicking on the link to his or her website and finding the contact form.  Please be sure to provide the following information in your request:
    • Your name and what grade(s) you work with
    • Your city and time zone (this is important for scheduling!)
    • Possible times to Skype on February 24th. Please note authors’ availability and time zones. Adjust accordingly if yours is different!
    • Your Skype username
    • A phone number where you can be reached on that day in case of technical issues
  • Please understand that authors are people, too, and have schedules and families just like you, so not all authors will be available at all times. It may take a few tries before you find someone whose books and schedule fit with yours. If I learn that someone’s schedule for the day is full, I’ll put a line through their name – that means the author’s schedule is full, and no more visits are available.  (Authors, please let me know that if you can!)

World Read Aloud Day – Skyping Author Volunteers for February 24, 2016.

Authors are listed here (kind of randomly, actually…in the order they emailed me) along with publishers, available times, and the age groups for which they write.  (PB=picture books, MG=middle grades, YA=young adult, etc.)


Phil Bildner
 FSG and Chronicle
Older Elementary 
9-12 (Eastern Time)

Jennifer Maschari
Older Elementary & Middle School
8 am- 12pm EST 

Joanne Levy
Aladdin M!X (forthcoming), Bloomsbury
Middle School
8 am  – 4 pm EST

Stacy McAnulty
Random House Kids
8:30 am- 2pm EST

Kim Norman
Penguin, Sterling & Scholastic
Younger Elementary
10am-3pm Eastern Time Zone

Ammi-Joan Paquette
11am – 3pm EST 

Melanie Crowder
Atheneum / Simon & Schuster

Upper Elementary, Middle School or High School
8 am -11 am MST

Julie Falatko
Viking Children’s Books
9 am – 2 pm EST

Lisa Jahn-Clough
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Elementary K – 3 (picture books)

High school (YA novels)
9 am – 2 pm EST

Sarah Albee
Random House/Bloomsbury/National Geographic

Middle School, Older Elementary
1 – 3 Eastern Time

Josh Funk
Sterling Children’s
Younger Elementary
8am – 6pm EST

Jennifer Swanson
National Geographic Kids, Charlesbridge, Capstone 
Older Elementary, Middle School, High School
 8am to 2pm EST

Miranda Paul
Lerner Publishing Group & Macmillan Children’s

9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. (Central)

Molly B. Burnham
Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins
older elementary
East Coast time available school hours

Anne Marie Pace
Disney-Hyperion, Scholastic, Henry Holt, Beach Lane
Younger Elementary
9-3 Eastern time, minus 1:45 – 2:15

Augusta Scattergood

Upper Elementary, Middle School      
2-5 PM EST

Nanci Turner Steveson
HarperCollins Children’s
Upper Elementary/Middle School 
8:30-11:30 Mountain Time

Alma Fullerton
HarperCollins, Fitzhenry and Whiteside
8am – 2pm EST

Erin Dealey
Simon & Schuster/Atheneum, Sleeping Bear, Kane Miller

Flexible to your needs–worldwide. (I’m PST)

Laura Sassi
Zonderkidz (HarperCollins Christian Publishing)
Younger Elementary, Preschool

10am – 2pm EST

Hayley Barrett
Candlewick Press
Younger Elementary
9-12 EST

Deborah Freedman
Viking Children’s Books
Younger Elementary
9 am — 3 pm EST

Nikki Loftin
Penguin (Razorbill)
Older Elementary
1 pm – 4 pm Central

Sarah Darer Littman
Scholastic Press/S & S Aladdin
Upper Elementary/Middle School/High School
8 am- 4pm EST

Sarah Jamila Stevenson
Flux Books
Middle School/High School
10am – 3pm PST

Michelle Edwards
Random House Books for Young Readers, HMH
Younger Elementary
9 am- 3 pm  CST

Katy Duffield
Two Lions Publishing
Younger Elementary
9am to 3pm EST

Rosanne Parry
Random House Books for Young Readers
Older Elementary
8:30 to 2:30 PST

Allison Ofanansky
Younger Elementary
9 am to 5 pm. Israel (2 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time)

Lauren Magaziner
Penguin Books for Young Readers
9 am – 6 pm EST

Nancy Castaldo
Houghton Mifflin/Random House/National Geographic
Elementary, Middle, High
1-3 pm

Abby Cooper
Older Elementary/Middle School
9 AM – 4 PM Central

Gretchen Kelley
Henry Holt for Young Readers
Older Elementary/early middle school
Available 8:00- 2:00 EST

Jodi Wheeler-Toppen
National Geographic Kids and Capstone Press
Upper Elementary/Middle
8:30 am- 2pm EST

Denis Markell
Little Simon (Simon and Shuster) 
Younger Elementary
9am – 2pm EST

Kerry O’Malley Cerra
SkyPony Press
upper elementary, middle school
9AM-2PM Easter Standard Time
Madelyn Rosenberg
Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins and Holiday House
Younger Elementary, Older Elementary, Middle School
9 a.m. to 11 a.m., Eastern

Lindsey Leavitt
HarperCollins, Bloomsbury
Older Elementary,  Middle School, High School
9am-3pm Mountain

Margie Palatini

Simon & Schuster, Harpercollins, Hyperion, Clarion, Dutton, Abrams, Scholastic
All Elementary
10 am to 2 pm (Eastern Standard)

Lisa Schroeder
Scholastic and Henry Holt
Elementary and Middle School
7 am to 10 am PST

Laura Murray
GP Putnam’s Sons, Penguin Random House Books for Young Readers
Younger Elementary
10:30 am – 12:30 pm EST

Dana Alison Levy
Delacorte Press/Penguin Random House
9-3 EST

Jennifer Roy
Middle school
Amazon, Simon and Schuster, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
9 – 2 EST
Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich
Balzer & Bray/HarperCollins
Elementary/Middle School
8:30 AM am- 1pm EST
Sue Fliess

Random House Children’s Books, Little Golden Books & Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Younger Elementary
9 am – 1 pm EST
Keila Dawson
Pelican Publishing Co., Inc.
8:00am – 3:00pm Eastern Standard Time
Lee Gjertsen Malone

Older Elementary/Middle School
8am – 2pm EST
Kirsti Call
Character Publishing
Elementary, Picture Book
1:00-2:00pm  EST
Jeanie Franz Ransom
Charlesbridge, Magination Press, Peachtree
Younger Elementary
9 AM-3:30 PM CST
Tracey Baptiste
Algonquin Books for Young Readers
Grades 3-8
9am-noon EST
Deborah Guarino
Scholastic Press
Younger Elementary
School hours EST

Julie Segal Walters
Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Younger Elementary
9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

 Brenda Ferber

FSG and Dial
Elementary and Middle School
10am-noon EST
Tamara Ellis Smith

Schwartz & Wade/Random House
Middle school 
9-1:30 EST
Carmela LaVigna Coyle

Rising Moon, Taylor Trade, Rio Nuevo
Younger Elementary
9 am- 3pm  MST
Jennifer Fosberry

Sourcebooks Jabberwocky


10 am -2 pm PST

Jane Sutcliffe
Charlesbridge, Lerner
Older Elementary, Middle School
8am-2pm, EST
Robin Yardi

Arbordale & Carolrhoda
8:15 am – 2pm PST
Rob Buyea
Penguin Random House (Delacorte)
Older Elementary
10:00-1:00 EST
Carmella Van Vleet
Charlesbridge, Holiday House, Nomad Press
All Elementary
9:00 am – 3:00pm EST
Dianne Ochiltree

Blue Apple Books
Younger Elementary
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time

Dianne White
Beach Lane Books/Simon & Schuster
Younger Elementary
10 – 3 pm MST

Stephanie Greene
Putnam Books for Young Readers
Younger Elementary
9-3 EST
Sarah Prineas

HarperCollins Children’s
HarperCollins Teen
Older elementary/Middle/High school
Central time zone (Iowa).  Available all day.
Anne Ylvisaker

Grades 3-6
9:30 am – 3pm  PST
Janet Sumner Johnson
Capstone Young Readers
Older Elementary

8 am – 12 pm PST
Ann Jacobus

St. Martin’s Griffin/Macmillan
High School
8:30am – 2:30 pm PST
Jasmine Richards
Harper Collins
Older Elementary/Middle School
PST 12-3PM
Susan Laidlaw

Penguin Random House
High School (14+)
Available 2pm – 4pm PST; 9-11 am EST/CST (I live in Vietnam ICT)
Debbie Dadey
Simon and Schuster
Younger Elementary
Afternoon EST
Katy Kelly

Random House/ Delacorte
Older Elementary (Second- Fifth Grades)
9 AM – 3PM EST
Karen Romano Young 

Chronicle Books 
Upper elementary or middle school 
10-6 EST
Tricia Springstubb
All elementary and middle school
1-4 PM EST
Shelley Pearsall
Random House Books for Young Readers
Older Elementary and Middle School
12pm to 3pm. EST

Marcie Colleen
Macmillan/Imprint, Balzer+Bray/HarperCollins, Scholastic
9am-4pm PCT

Patricia J. Murphy 
Penguin Random House 
Pre-K – 3rd Grade  
Central Standard Time (8:30-3:30 p.m.)
Gail Nall
Aladdin/Simon & Schuster; and Epic Reads Impulse/Harper
Older Elementary and Middle School
10 am – 2 pm EST

Robbie Byerly
ARC Press Publishing
Younger Elementary 
10 am – 4 pm EST

Dee Romito
Aladdin/Simon & Schuster
Older Elementary/Middle School
9 am- 2 pm EST

David A. Kelly
Random House Books for Young Readers / Lerner Publishing
9 am – 5pm EST

Melanie Conklin
Penguin (Putnam)
Older Elementary or Middle School
10am-2pm EST

Dianne K. Salerni
Older Elementary/Middle School
9 am – 5 pm (EST)

Nancy Viau
Albert Whitman & Co.
Younger Elementary
Noon – 3 pm EST

Monica Tesler
Simon & Schuster/Aladdin
Older Elementary, Middle School
Laurie Wallmark
Creston Books
9-12(Eastern time)
Gail Donovan
Penguin (Dutton, Dial)
Older Elementary


Stephanie Bearce
Source Books/Prufrock Press
Upper Elementary, Middle School
8am-3pm CST
John Bianchi
Douglas & McIntyre
Grosset & Dunlap
10:00 AM – 1:00 PM MST
Monica Carnesi

Penguin (Nancy Paulsen Books)
9 am – 5:00 pm EST
Darlene Beck Jacobson
Creston Books, Berkeley, CA
Grades 3-6
11:30 Am- 2:30 PM EST
Robin Mellom


Older Elementary (3rd-6th)

9 a.m. – 2 p.m. (Pacific)

Robin Newman 
Creston Books 
Younger Elementary
9:00 am – 12:00 pm EST
Jenn Bishop
Knopf / Random House
Older Elementary, Middle School
11 am – 4 pm EST
Deb Pilutti
Simon & Schuster/Henry Holt/Christy Ottaviano
8 am – 10 am and 2-3pm EST

Dan Paley
Tilbury House
Young Elementary
8am- 3pm PST

Jesse Klausmeier
Chronicle Books
All Elementary
10:00 – 5:00 CST
Margo Sorenson
Pelican Publishing, Marimba/Just Us Books, Perfection Learning
7 AM-2:30 PM Pacific
Sarah Sullivan

Candlewick Press
All Elementary
8 a.m. to 2 p.m. EST
Wendy BooydeGraaff

Ripple Grove Press
Younger Elementary
12 pm – 3 pm EST

Gerry Swallow (Dr. Cuthbert Soup)F
Older Elementary and Middle School, ages 8-12.
10-12AM Pacific

Bridget Hodder
Macmillan/ Farrar, Straus & Giroux
Upper Elementary & Middle School (Grades 4 -8)
Available 10:00 – 2:00 EST
Annemarie O’Brien
Alfred A. Knopf / Penguin Random House
Elementary / Middle School
9:30am – 3pm PST
I’ll be updating this list every few days until WRAD, so if you check back, you’ll find that the options will change. Schedules will fill, so some folks will no longer be available, but there will also be new people added.

Authors & Illustrators: If your schedule is full & you need to be crossed off the list, please email to let me know. If you’d like to be added to the list, directions are here. Please note that this particular list is limited to traditionally published authors/illustrators, only to limit its size and scope. I’m one person with limited time. However, if someone else would like to compile and share a list of self-published, magazine, and ebook author/illustrator volunteers, I think that would be absolutely great, and I’ll happily link to it here. Just let me know!

Happy reading, everyone!

“World Read Aloud Day is about taking action to show the world that the right to read and write belongs to all people. World Read Aloud Day motivates children, teens, and adults worldwide to celebrate the power of words, especially those words that are shared from one person to another, and creates a community of readers advocating for every child’s right to a safe education and access to books and technology.”              ~from the LitWorld website

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