Type of Artist:
An award-winning children’s author, I believe passionately in the importance of engaging young people of all ages and backgrounds with reading and story-making.
My own desire to write exciting historical adventures grew out of a love of history fostered by visits to countless ruined castles, stately homes and museums as a child, and later, studying for a BA in Medieval History and more recently, an MA in Writing for Children. I love the challenge of weaving the ‘big story’ of my characters into compelling, real-life historical events such as the Gunpowder Plot, WW2 and the Tudor court.
Through my engagement with young readers at schools and festivals, I hope to encourage them to see that they are the heroes of their own stories, and to believe that, like the characters in my books, they have the brave hearts and the power to change the world for the better.
A lively, interactive session in which I:
• Introduce myself and share how I became a writer, including early difficulties with reading and the sorts of books and writing I enjoyed as a child.
• Reveal the sources of inspiration for my stories – places, characters, real-life events – and give a brief reading from the chosen book.
• Share how I go about researching my stories and some of the intriguing/unusual things I have discovered along the way.
• Lead the children in a fun interactive story-starter session, linked to the chosen book, to either build a character or the start of a brand new story.
• Answer the children’s questions in a quick-fire Q&A at the end.
The talk is followed by a book signing where children have a chance to ask me more questions.
Creative writing workshops
I offer workshops on a range of topics including:
• building compelling heroes and villains
• story-starter workshops linked to the themes and ideas explored in my own fiction
• using historical objects as story sparks
• making your writing more exciting.
I am also open to developing other themed workshops depending on the school’s needs.
DetailsPreferred age range:
KS2 & KS3
Maximum number in any one session:
For an Assembly - up to 350 - 30 ( a class) for workshops
No of sessions per day:
One assembly talk (up to 350 children), plus book signing and a maximum of four 45 minute to one hour workshops a day (maximum: 30 children per workshop).
45-60 minutes for a talk plus time for signing afterwards
Workshops – 45 minutes to an hour per workshop plus time for signing afterwards if not previously covered
Areas prepared to travel to:
I am based in Farnham, Surrey. I am prepared to travel anywhere provided the destination can be reached by public transport and, for more distant destinations, overnight expenses, subsistence and travel are met.
Train and taxi when necessary
Please email us for details
Hold PLI (public liability insurance):
Ally Sherrick's website page
The Buried Crown
The Queen’s Fool (publishing Feb 2021)
The children loved listening to Ally and most certainly got a lot out of it! It was clear from their responses in the assembly, and in the year 4 Q&A, that they had listened carefully and were interested in the subject matter. It was also really inspiring to hear of Ally’s background and her own inspirations as a writer.
Thanks so much again – it was a really brilliant visit, and really well pitched to the age groups involved.’
Ruth Oliver, Class Teacher and Humanities Subject Leader, Sunnyhill Primary, Streatham
Dear Ally, a massive ‘thank you’ for yesterday. Everyone had a great day and the book sales were the most popular we’ve had for quite a while! I’m sure we’ll be in touch again!
Liz Underhill – Deputy Headteacher – Heatherside Junior School, Fleet
Ally was not only enthusiastic and enjoyable to listen to, she had fantastic tips for the children to become great writers through developing strong, descriptive and interesting heroes and villains.
Sarah Baimbridge – Year 6 teacher and English Lead – Bethany Junior School, Bournemouth
‘We had such an interesting and informative morning with Ally; the children were enthralled with her presentation and they especially loved all the gory details about what happened to Guy Fawkes after he was captured. There has been so much lovely feedback from the children and parents about the visit and lots of children are enjoying reading ‘Black Powder.’ Ally managed to engage and enthuse the children, inspiring them to create their own stories about the Gunpowder Plot.’
Jo Clarke, Library Manager, Whitchurch C of E Primary School, Hants
Ally Sherrick's Amazon site
Historical Association's Young Quills Award 2017
'Black Powder 'has also won the North Somerset Teachers' Book Awards 2017 in the ‘Moving on’ category for older primary/lower secondary readers and was shortlisted/longlisted for seven other Awards.
‘The Buried Crown’ was shortlisted for the East Sussex Children’s Book Award 2019 and the Staffordshire Young Teen Fiction Award 2019