The substance of this book boils down to two main theses:-know your subject so thoroughly that you cannot be caught with nothing to say; know how to capture and hold your audience. To achieve these goals, Mark Hanna, Associate Professor of Speech at Fresno State College, charts a reasonable and practical course. He starts- as too few people writing on this subject do -- with the necessity of a good introduction. It must capture immediate attention- by being concrete, definite, by startling the audience, by the use of a pertinent story (not the so-called humorous type), by asking a question that catches their interest, by the use of human interest material that provides a springboard for the subject to be developed. He then discusses the necessity of sound preparation of the body of the talk, which requires an inquisitive and acquisitive mind, imagination, resourcefulness, the organization of more material than will be needed, the ability to condense that material by selection and classification and intelligent order. He urges writing out a speech in order to view it whole, but never either to read it or memorize it (except perhaps for a few punch lines, first and last). He discusses the vital elements of the conclusion; the importance of stage appearance, of good voice and delivery. He suggests the types of things that make people laugh, the use of exaggeration, incongruity, the unexpected. And he makes some excellent points for the experienced- as well as the inexperienced speaker, such as keeping a notebook- accumulating material that may come in later, and so on. Sound, practical, full of illustrative material. But it wont make a bad speaker into a good speaker, just by reading it!