|What are you afraid of?
Several years ago, I was talking to a young woman on the phone about
a writing project when she asked me if I did anything besides writing.
When I told her I was a professional speaker, she said, "I've
often thought I'd like to be a speaker."
I said, "Oh, what's your topic?"
There was a pause. Then she said, "I need a topic?"
This young lady didn't seem to be afraid of the idea of public speaking.
(She just hadn't thought it through.) Certainly many of you reading
this would rather eat a bug than speak in front of a group. You
can alleviate a lot of that fear very easily: know your subject.
Inside and out, front and back.
But as speakers, we need to look at this from another angle. What
do you suppose is an audience's greatest fear?
No audience member wants to be held hostage by a speaker who couldn't
find the point of his speech with GPS and a dowsing rod and isn't
particularly funny while he's looking for it.
Enter the Doctor
This is where I can help with two essential ingredients: clarity
and humor. Clarity is always appropriate; humor is situational.
For instance: If you're giving a presentation on the history of
embalming, clarity is key, while humor would be off-putting to say
But if you're giving an informational presentation on, say, the
quarterly sales reports, humor is a necessary leavening agent.
Clarity: Writing for the page is different from writing for the
ear. I'll tighten up your page prose and make it ear-friendly.
Humor: The humor will be organic, in sync with your style and voice
and with the tone and content of your material.
If giving your speech were compared to baking a loaf of bread,
humor would be the yeast and clarity would keep it from sticking
to the pan.
This is personal
Because of the personal nature of this service, I need a clear sense
of who you are and what your style of speaking is. For that reason,
we'll need a phone interview at minimum and a face-to-face meeting
Please note: you can tell folks who punched up your speech if you
want to, and I hope you do. But they won't hear about it from me.
Get in touch and let's get started.