Anyway, my topic was 'How to survive the zombie apocalypse'
I was excited about the topic but I think I got too consumed by being visually entertaining that I lost sight of what was important...the actual speech.
Admittedly, I didn't rehearse very much because I was planning on using the slides (I made a power point show) to guide me through. Because I relied on the slides so much, I ended up reading from them far too often, which is a big no-no when presenting in public. When you read from a slide, you turn your back and your attention away from the audience.
I did find the content quite entertaining (if I do say so myself) and could have hit it out of the park had I either gone with pictures only or just the topics rather than spelling out each bullet point on the slides. I was too tempted to read each point -too bent on making sure I got everything just right and that became my undoing. So, lesson learned. The feedback from the group reflected my own assessment of my presentation -look at the audience, the visual aids are there for THEM, not me!
On Tuesday, I had another speaking engagement. This one wasn't practice and it was something I'd been looking forward to for a long time. I spoke in front of about 30 people, 25 of them were students, 5 were on staff at a wonderful place called CONCERN. A wonderful organization.
Most of the boys come from the juvenile justice system or via social services. This was far and away, my favorite speaking engagement to date. The boys were engaging, smart, funny and genuinely interested in every topic I touched on. I'd never been asked so many questions about my book -it was great to see so much interest and desire to learn in one room! All of the boys commented about what they are currently reading and found particular interest in the writing and publishing process.
I would go back in a heartbeat. I've been inspired. I can't say at the moment where this road will lead, but I can say that my visit has reinforced a paradigm shift of my life goals that I've been undergoing recently. Writing can be a powerful thing for those desperately in need of an outlet to help them move on from their harrowing childhoods and rise above that which holds them down.
I'm sure you will hear more on this in the future.
Keep writing! Keep reading!
As always, find interviews, writing samples, videos, contests and more on my re-vamped website.
In bookstores 6-5-2012