Glossophobia

599377_443767885655485_1017500365_nLots of things freak me out.  The numbers on the scale. My bank account balance.  The mileage on my car. The lack of tread on my tires. But word count isn’t one of them.  I’ve got my plan for 2014, not an overly-ambitious plan, just a plan.

I wish I were more jazzed about cracking word counts, but the tsunami of digital publishing has left me underwhelmed, and perhaps feeling more practical about the coming year. My goal is to simply put out great, well-crafted, superbly edited books. The process will take as long as the process takes.  But there is one quantifiable goal for 2014 that freaks me out more than the little box on my credit card statement that reads Amount Due. It’s public speaking.

And it has everything to do with being a writer in this day and age.

Unfortunately, my palms sweat just thinking about it. The last time I addressed an audience was seven years ago. Even at my best I was a so-so public speaker.  I got my information across, but knock-their-socks-off I did not. Yet this year I know I must step up my game and continue to build readership. Teaching a class is one way to do that, and now with several books under my belt, I feel it’s time to get out there. Again.

As I’ve begun to prepare two classes, one for fiction and one for nonfiction, things are very different. With the vast sea changes Elaura@Flamingobattering publishing, I’m anxious, but more confident.  None of us are standing on solid ground. It’s almost relaxing knowing that we are all swimming in uncharted waters together and sharing any information or direction we may have. That’s a much better way to look at relaying my thoughts than the old podium route. Not to mention, I have a lot more to say today (and I’ve learned to tread water and speak at the same time).

So this is my goal for 2014: Finish my class outlines, propose them and book a gig (and like Asa, if I don’t make this goal I will be buying a round of drinks for the Janes).

onithelonely400x600Jamie Brazil is the author of Oni the Lonely (January 2014) and other novels.

Mari Kato, 16, wants what everyone else her age wants: a driver’s license. Too bad a family curse, passed on by her Japanese-born Buddhist dad, who claims to be thousands of years old, transforms Mari into a flesh-eating Oni demon when she feels frustrated (like every time she gets behind the wheel). But when her geologist mom moves their vegan-lifestyle-obsessed family to Rock Creek, Mari stumbles upon the gates of Hell and a mining company plundering its depths. Add in an evil cheerleader determined to steal Mari’s first boyfriend and plunge the Earth into eternal darkness. Suddenly getting the keys to the car isn’t as important as saving the world. Totally dealable… if she can find the courage to reveal her demon self.

About these ads

About Jamie Brazil

Humor writer, romance novelist, Bloodhound enthusiast.

Posted on January 20, 2014, in Jamie Brazil and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

  1. You’re braver than I am, Jamie! I’d rather do pretty much anything to get out of public speaking, but you GO GIRL!!

  2. Reblogged this on JAMIE BRAZIL and commented:

    All the things that freak me out, plus my goal for 2014! Reposted from SEE JANE PUBLISH earlier this week. I hope you will check it out.
    Lots of things freak me out. The numbers on the scale. My bank account balance. The mileage on my car. The lack of tread on my tires. But word count isn’t one of them. I’ve got my plan for 2014, not an overly-ambitious plan, just a plan.

    I wish I were more jazzed about cracking word counts, but the tsunami of digital publishing has left me underwhelmed, and perhaps feeling more practical about the coming year. My goal is to simply put out great, well-crafted, superbly edited books. The process will take as long as the process takes. But there is one quantifiable goal for 2014 that freaks me out more than the little box on my credit card statement that reads Amount Due. It’s public speaking.

  3. I just found out that the workshop I proposed for RWA National has been accepted, and now I’m freaking out. Although I’m usually comfortable speaking in front of people–I do it every day in the classroom–a workshop at nationals is scary. The ironic thing is that the title of the talk is: Untie Your Tongue: How to Lead Successful Workshops and Author Events with Confidence.

    So, basically I’m freaking out about speaking publicly about public speaking. :-)

    • That’s a great title for a workshop. If I were at Nationals I’d be first through the door. Maybe, when you’re in the Portland area, you’d consider teaching that class at RCRW.

  4. 500 people! Ack. Not sure you could crowbar me out of the hotel room if I knew 500 people were waiting. I’m very impressed, Mary. YES, I’d love to chat about this.

  5. On the plus side, speakers freaking out can be entertaining for the crowd, so if you’re gonna freak, freak big!

  6. This is a great goal. What helps me do public speaking is to focus on the “teaching” part, not the speaking part. Also to truly care about your audience. When I teach, I really want to help. I think that comes through. When people know you care about them and what they are learning, they forgive all kinds of bumbles.

    One other thing that helps, if you are working up to a panic, is to find two or three friends in the audience. When you are speaking look directly at them and talk just to them. If you can focus tightly, the rest of the audience will fade. The best part is that whole section sitting near your friend thinks you are talking to them. :)

    You can do this!

    • Thanks, Maggie. Your class two weekends ago was fantastic and I enjoyed seeing your wisdom above at work! Though you didn’t bumble at all. You were super prepared and it showed.

  7. Public speaking doesn’t freak me out but they are rare enough occurrences that I can practice for two weeks prior. This is what I did even for the 2 minute talk at my daughter’s wedding. And I held notes in my hand because it was an emotional type event. :D

  8. Jamie, public speaking scares me too! Last year I had to speak in front of 500 people for the day job. I was completely freaked out, but just like writing, the more you do the better you get. I rehearse like I rewrite, a lot!! YOU CAN DO IT!!!! Let me know if you want to grab a coffee and chat about it sometime. :)

Thanks for your comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,653 other followers

%d bloggers like this: