Compassionate, positive encouragement for speakers who need to improve their games.



For the many people who dread public speaking, Roth Fay’s concise debut is not just instructional, but reassuring.

A public speaking coach, Roth Fay lays out a well-structured, step-by-step plan for creating any type of presentation, covering the key parts—audience, message, and presenter—in text that is informal yet highly informative, using plenty of examples (both good and bad) and reinforcing her points with useful takeaways at the end of each chapter. The author stresses the importance of audience, preaching that presenters often spend virtually all of their time thinking about themselves when they should be attentive to those they’re instructing. Her “Audience Assessment Tool” provides critical questions to ask that should help any presenter more effectively concentrate on the needs of attendees. Likewise, she offers two authoritative chapters on the presentation itself, including tips on using bold, energetic words, how to structure a presentation, the value of storytelling, and essential rules for creating good visuals. Here, Roth Fay highlights many of the common mistakes that plague presenters; she humorously addresses “non-verbal distractors,” such as playing with a pen or eyeglasses, as well as “verbal audience distractors” of the “um” and “you know” variety. Some of her wise suggestions—“Don’t be guilty of focusing only on one or two audience members” and “Don’t be afraid to go out into the audience and get within touching distance”—are sure to resonate even with experienced presenters. As for anxiety, Roth Fay provides several calming suggestions, such as reducing one’s focus on the “initial physical reaction.” Two additional chapters regarding elevator pitches and job interviews demonstrate ways the author’s advice can be applied more broadly. The tone is easy and nonthreatening, and many helpful suggestions occur throughout.

Compassionate, positive encouragement for speakers who need to improve their games.

Pub Date: Oct. 8, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-692-28785-9

Page Count: 200

Publisher: bespeak presentation solutions, llc

Review Posted Online: July 10, 2018

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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