I’ve been speaking for over twenty years, and have learned a lot about connecting with an audience. These were not always easy lessons, and looking back, there were some things that I would have done differently. Part of it was my being new to the world of speaking and honestly probably trying a little too hard in the beginning. It takes time to develop your own style, to figure out what works and what doesn’t. Here are the important do’s and don’ts I've learned about giving a powerful author talk that I hope you'll find useful.
When you're booked for an author speaking engagement, you'll likely be asked how you’d like the room arranged, what kind of microphone you prefer, and if you have any specific tech requests. Many authors new to author speaking, most likely won't know what to ask for when first embarking on the adventure of being a touring author. Outlined here are some tips for those new to author speaking appearances.
Being an author can be one of the most rewarding yet toughest jobs you’ll ever do. My friends and family always laugh when I tell them, “I’m going into the cave.” They know that means I’ll be writing, phone off, no contact with the outside world until I meet that day’s deadline, which is usually two-thousand words. On the other hand, a large part of an author’s life is putting yourself out there and interacting with the public.
It’s one of the most challenging tasks that can be asked of an author, to choose a passage from their book that represents, better yet, encapsulates its essence. When I owned a PR firm, most of my clients were authors, and I’d select their excerpts all the time. Piece of cake! Then I became an author, and soon discovered, it’s much harder when it’s your book.
A lot of authors see publishing a book as an end in and of itself, but you can actually use it as a catalyst for your career and life goals. Something magical happens when you publish a book. You become an expert. Whether your book's genre is self-help, business, history, memoir, or fiction, pick any category, it doesn’t matter. It’s the fact that you possessed the knowledge to pen an entire book on a subject or idea that now makes you an expert, someone whom others accept as an authority. One of the best ways to expand that authority is professional speaking.