I’m using today’s post to say a grateful thank you to all the wonderful people who commented on, and sent me emails, about my blog article posted yesterday about performing a reading at the National Queer Arts Festival.
This really goes back to what I said in my recent series about why I love writing, that is, the writers I’ve meet through this process of publishing and marketing my book have been the most supportive people I’ve ever known. It is such a brilliant feeling to know that so many people, really talented people, are pulling for me. There is no competitiveness among writers. When one wins, we all win, and I love that attitude. I received more than a dozen comments and emails with very helpful advice, and I’m planning on using much of it.
For those of you who have a fear of speaking in public, as I do, I’ll share some of the helpful comments:
1. Many people mentioned practicing reading the passage every day, and while reading to ignore everything else and become absorbed in the story. And if possible, read into a digital recorder so I can view my progress.
2. Several people mentioned gathering a group of friends, even some very critical friends, and read the chosen passage to them at least once, perhaps multiple times to different groups. (wish I had that many friends living close by)
3. Two different people offered to listen as I read the passage and to critique my ‘showmanship’. One is quite a distance away but still offered to pick up the phone charges. (Bryl, you are so, so sweet.)
4. Another, who has read Island Song, told me to simply stay focused on what a wonderful story it is. Focus on the story, not me, not the audience, but the story. It is a great story and I should feel proud to present it to people, like introducing your child to guests.
5. Enid mentioned putting a contest together to select the best scene to read. Nice idea, but the committee has already determined which scene they want me to read. It apparently is very structured.
6. I think the advice that rang truest for me was to stay in the moment and read from the heart, letting the passion of the story come through.
There were several more comments, and everyone who contacted me was both gracious and kind. Thank you all for your advice and support.