Mary Kay Carson

Author of books for kids about wildlife, nature, space, weather, and more!

Mary Kay Carson

Author of books for kids about wildlife, nature, space, weather, and more!

FEES: Honorarium is based on time incurred and distance traveled.

  • Half day includes 1-2 presentations and is limited to 3 hours at school.

  • Full day includes 3-4 presentations thoughout an entire school day.

  • Local visits are within 60 miles of zip code 45223, farther are non-local.

Local Visits: $500 for half day and $800 for full day.

Non-Local: $600 for half day and $900 for full day, plus travel expenses (mileage and lodging).

Author Visits

📌March 3: Young author event at Wittenberg Univ

YES! I am available to give presentations at schools, libraries, clubs, and other organizations. All programs are tailored to meet the specific needs and preferences of the audience and its organizers.

   Contact me via email to inquire about availability, details, references, or other information. There's also biographical information on the About Me page.

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2016-2017 Programs for Author Visits:



Telling True Tales (all ages)

Even though she writes nonfiction, Mary Kay still sees herself as a storyteller. Hear some of the amazing true tales featured in her books—from the daring deeds of Underground Railroad heroes to the amazing discoveries of space scientists and how a rhino named Emi finally became a mom. Photographs and illustrations of the people and places featured in the true tales accompany the stories.


Batty Science (all ages)

Discover the mysterious and fascinating world of bats—the only furred creatures (mammals) that fly. Find out about the world’s more than a thousand bat species, and which kinds live around here. Learn how their bodies are built for flight, what bats eat, and how they get around in the dark. Students will uncover and debunk common myths about these misunderstood mammals. They’ll also meet some of the bat conservationists profiled in The Bat Scientists who are working to change minds and help bats survive.


The Story Behind Emi, Cincinnati’s Famous Rhino (all ages)

Meet Emi and her famous Sumatran rhino family, the real-life rhinos featured in the book Emi and the Rhino Scientist. Hear the story of how Cincinnati Zoo’s endangered species scientist Terri Roth struggled for years to help Emi become a mother—and help save Emi’s rare species from extinction. Students also find out how the author researched and wrote the book.


Helping Endangered Wildlife (all grades)Take a tour through a number of the author’s Scientists in the Field books to find out how scientists are helping to save rhinos, bats, Gila monsters, salamanders, grizzly bears, and other endangered critters. Books featured include Emi and the Rhino Scientist, The Bat Scientists, and Park Scientists: Gila Monsters, Geysers, and Grizzly Bears in America's Own Backyard.


Tour the NEW Solar System (all ages)

Join the author for a fun tour of our newly organized solar system. Find out how Pluto got kicked out of the planet club and who else is in the new dwarf planet category. See amazing images of the planets, moons, asteroids, and comets and learn far-out facts and the latest findings of astronomers and recent space missions. Students are challenged to not only explore the solar system, but to discover how we’ve learned what we know about our solar system through history.


Why Are These Animals So Weird? (grades K-6)

Lots of animals look weird—think of alien-like bugs and bats with leaf-shaped noses. But have you ever wondered why animals look like they do? Find out how looking weird helps these animals find food, hide, and survive. As part of their exploration of animal adaptations, students investigate camouflage and how big ears allow animals to hear better.


The Wright Brothers (all ages)

Find out how two bicycle-making brothers from Dayton, with no more than high-school educations, accomplished a feat that forever changed the world. How did Wilbur and Orville Wright discover the secret of flight and invent the airplane?


Ride the Underground Railroad (grades 3-9)

Learn how a secret society of abolitionist outlaws and sympathizers helped slaves escape from bondage in the South to freedom up North. Meet heroes like Harriet Tubman who risked their lives helping slaves reach freedom. During their exploration students learn how slaves navigated their way north by the stars as well as explore the code language of the Underground Railroad.


Writing Is My Job (all ages)

Students find out about the author and the books she’s written in this program. The author talks about the twisty and unlikely road she journeyed to become a writer; why she likes to write about “real” things like science and history instead of making up stories; why she writes for young people; why she chose to write the books she’s written; and what a typical day in the life of a professional writer is like. Students are encouraged to ask questions!


Three Steps to Write (grades 1-9)

Help your students write more easily by breaking down the process of writing into three simple steps—Get Ready, Write, and Make It Better. The author shares her real life experiences and anecdotes of how she follows these steps, while helping students see how to apply them to their own writing. Students can work through a worksheet of the steps provided by the author as part of the presentation (classroom-sized audiences) or later with their teachers.


Let’s Create a Book! (grades 1-6)

There’s no better way to learn than by doing! This is a classroom workshop for small groups of students (fewer than 30). The author guides the class through the actual process of creating a book. Together they brainstorm ideas, research the book, organize the information, and write it. Each student contributes a page to the finished product—a book! (Minimum 2 hours.)