Denise loves to visit secondary schools around Ireland. Her workshops are designed to empower students to believe in themselves as storytellers and to develop an enthusiasm for creating and controlling worlds of their own.
Many schools ask Denise back again and again to deliver her story workshop to different years.
Workshops last an hour. Ideally, this is followed by a thirty-minute Q&A where students get a chance to ask questions of their own.
History teachers request a different type of visit. Here, Denise talks about the lives of rebels and soldiers during the Easter Rising of 1916 as well as Irish regiments posted to Gallipoli during WW1. As her novel, Through the Barricades has been meticulously researched, teachers will often have students read the novel in advance and then invite Denise to visit to answer questions about the book and the period. The novel is written in the first person, from two different points of view – each from opposite sides of the Rising – a girl rebel and a boy soldier.
Because Denise has had so many careers (nurse, china-restorer, pharmaceutical sales rep, public relations consultant, entrepreneur, college lecturer and author), TY Co-ordinators often invite her to speak motivationally about career choices, the silver-lining in mistakes, how change can be good, how we are always in search of ourselves.
To Organise a Visit
Teachers and librarians, interested in learning more, can contact Denise.
Denise also takes part in the Writers in Schools scheme. If you are a student who would like a visit, the best route is to ask your English teacher, school librarian or TY co-ordinator to contact Denise.