Last month I did a wee talk online for Bookmachine, a group for publishing professionals. If you’re not already a member, I would highly recommend joining up. There is masses on there from connecting with industry pros to learning more about how to progress in publishing, the founder Laura Summers has created a wonderful resource.
My talk was on public speaking for their Wednesday Wisdom lunchtime sessions. It was amended slightly to include presenting online since it may be a bit of time before we’re back to public speaking. I realised, watching it back, that I am incapable of finishing a complete sentence. I must be a nightmare to transcribe. However, the encouraging thing was that if someone as scatter-brained as me can do a significant amount of public speaking, then so can anyone.
Here are a few top tips for presenting online (to watch the complete talk, you’ll have to join Bookmachine):
- Turn off your phone and the phones of anyone who will be within earshot of the mic.
- Close any windows in case of car alarms, children playing, neighbours yelling.
- Ensure the light is in front of you and not behind you.
- Keep water and tissues close by so you don’t have to go get them if you need them.
- Tell everyone in your household what you’re doing so they can answer the house phone or the doorbell and keep the door locked in case of younger children wandering in.
- Check what is behind you and within shot – but don’t over-style your background as that is as distracting as a messy one. Best to stick to as plain as you can manage so that your audience keeps their attention on what you’re saying.
- If it goes badly, do another one. And another one. Until nerves and bad sessions are things of the past.