I don’t know if you remember a while back when I had a local author book signing at our library, but they invited me back to speak at their Book Club Annual Christmas Party.
The opportunity to talk about my book? In front of a captive audience? And there will be goodies? OH yes, I am so there.
That event was held last night. Oh my gosh, the spread! I made a variety of the cocktail cupcakes that are featured in the bonus cookbook for Red Wine & Roses to share. They told me I didn’t have to bring anything, but I like to cook and well, when I mentioned that it would be the recipes featured in the book they were excited. I didn’t have a single cupcake to bring home, so I think they were a hit! It was all finger food and snacky stuff. The theme was sweet and salty. I suggested sweet and sultry.
I’m no stranger to public speaking. The last time I spoke, was in front of a group of 125 individuals. To be in a small group setting where a microphone isn’t necessary- Duncan Heinz! I know several people who are more afraid of public speaking than of dying. I’ll admit, the first few times I was shaking like a leaf and nearly puked. So I devised a method. Yep, I’m all about a method.
1. I don’t eat beforehand. That way I can’t puke on the audience.
2. I take a precautionary pee break, because once on stage, inevitably I will have to go. Preemptive peeing – it is mandatory.
3. Never, never, never imagine the audience naked. Worst advice I ever got! I have a vivid imagination. So, I get up there to start sharing about sexual abuse, and I glance over the audience, picturing them naked. GAH! That guy on the end that has a comb over and pants that he normally wears pulled up to his nipples, he had on tidy whities, with a mud streak. That dude in the back with the dark hair and tight jeans, . . . what was I saying? Shaking that off my eyes landed on a rotund guy that was easily 400 pounds. NO, NO, Just NOOOOOO! And that was before the women? Good greif! For the love of humanity! Do you know that when women wear pants, they don’t shave their legs? And did you know that most women who wear a push up bra do so because the sag has begun? GAAAAAAAHHHH!! It wasn’t pretty. I kept turning sideways and saying “Ummmmm, trying to get that image out of my head. Do not picture them naked. Not ever. BTW – speaking at a nudist colony is a big NO for me. Not. Going. To. Happen! EVER!
4. Make them laugh. I always practice the EIEIO method. Educate, Inform, Entertain, Inspire, and either Outrage, or Organize. I tend for the Outrage as it comes easily for me. It’s a knack! If you can get the audience to laugh, things seem to go smoother. It certainly breaks the tension. I’ve had more than a few people tell me I should have been a stand up comic. I don’t know about that, but I am quick with the jokes and punchlines.
Anyway, I digress. The speaking gig last night. It was a wonderful opportunity to gush over my book. One of the ladies that had already read the book commented on a few lines that I was particularly proud of. Like the one about the cooking fairy. She said, “I was going to ask you if you had to work hard to come up with the snark in your book, but after hearing you talk, I realize that it just seems to come natural to you.” It was stated with good intentions. After stating it however, she realized how it sounded and began to back peddle. I told her not to stress it, that the sarcasm was strong in our family.
My cousin was there as well, and upon hearing that she snorted. Then everyone was laughing. My cousin was quick to confirm, The Snark is strong with this one!
Till next time!