“Margi’s presentation was engaging and thoroughly enjoyable.”—Jane Zins, Media Specialist

MARGI PREUS’s writing career began when her audition for the kindergarten musical ’Sleeping Beauty’ went horribly wrong. Since then, she has written a bazillion plays and a bunch of books, including the Newbery Honor book Heart of a Samurai, the Minnesota Book Award winning West of the Moon, and Midwest Booksellers Choice Award’s The Clue in the Trees, part of the Enchantment Lake mystery series. Her books have been honored as ALA/ALSC Notables, landed on the New York Times bestseller list and many other “best-of” lists, selected as an NPR Backseat Book Club pick, and have won multiple awards. Her newest works are the picture book Lily Leads the Way (Candlewick) and the middle grade fantasy Windswept (Abrams/Amulet) which Horn Book’s starred review calls “fresh, rich, and buoyant.”

She lives in Duluth, MN where she can be found skiing, hiking, canoeing, or sitting quietly with a book in her lap.


About the Visit

Margi’s background in children’s theater is apparent in her dynamic and interactive presentations. With picture books, a chapter book, and middle grade novels from historical fiction to fantasy, Margi is comfortable conversing with grades K – 8 (and even grown-ups!) Her presentations may include visuals, a group storytelling activity, plenty of writing tips, Q&A, and reinforce that we are all storytellers, and we all have a story to tell.

Presentations may answer these and other questions:

  • How did a kindergarten disappointment steer Margi down the writing path and what happened next?
  • Where do ideas come from?
  • How does a book come to be? Who draws the pictures? How do you get from vague idea to finished book?
  • What are the real stories behind the stories?
  • What are some weird and unlikely ways to go about research?
  • Why is revision the most fun part of writing? (Yes, it is!!)
  • What are your dog’s top ten writing tips?
  • Are we really all storytellers? (Yes, we are!)

Margi is happy to customize her program for groups that have been or are reading one or more of her books. Learn about the real people (like the real “scoundrels” who inspired the characters in Village of Scoundrels) and the story behind the story. All about the research, writing, and the all-important role of revision, revision, revision. Plenty of time for Q&A.

Margi is also available to conduct writing workshops and residencies.


“We are still savoring Margi Preus’s visit with us here at Deerwood Elementary! We use her writing tips and insights on a regular basis!”— Lynn McGrane, Deerwood Elementary

“Margi Preus was a joy to work with. She was professional, prepared for anything, and she had great rapport with students of all ages.”— Steven Ketcham, W. Bloomfield, MI schools

Learn More