As I had difficulty to get a speech slot fast, I gave my first project speak "Icebreaker" - titled "and the ice did not break" in March as Mystery Speaker in Croydon Toastmasters Club.
I fall in love then and there.
With the audience.
And did not stop, since loving. Wether inside a Toastmasters club, at Spark London personal story telling stage, or in one of many Standup Comedy clubs I visited, it did not change: the audience gave me back that love they felt I had for them.
The first year, end of 2009 I wrote in a notebook I just found the balance of the year, what I did and what I achieved, beside getting in November my Competent Communicator award and beginning to tell stories on podium before live audience in fall.
Beside visiting a lots of clubs, helping and even giving speeches to some, I did not stop to read only the Manual which is indeed a great brief course of speech fundamentals. I did read and study also the following books that first year.
- Body-language for Dummies
- The Power of personal storytelling, Maguire (how to find, how to embody)
- Improving your storytelling, Doug Lipman (message, audience, you)
- Speak like Churchill, stand like Lincoln
- The lost art of great speech, Richard Davis (basic of rhetoric explained easy)
- In our Time, speeches that shaped the modern world - Howel William
- High impact speeches, Richard Heller (writing, delivering)
- Romancing the Room, James Waystaffe (charm the audience)
- Taking Center stage, Deb Gottesman and Buzz Mauro (acting skill to public speech)
- Presentation Zen, and The naked presenter, Garr Reynolds
- Whoever tells the best story, wins. Annette Simons - in corporate environment
- The story factor, Annette Simons
- The leaders guide to Storytelling: business narrative, Stephen Denning
- Telling your story, Donald Davis
- Learning public speaking skills, Dale Carnagie
- Big speeches in History
And those are only the first year books that I have now home - some of them I read many times. A lot of others joined them through the years, and I found some gems in each that I could use.
Yes, we do need more material, each depending of course on his or her interest - mine that first year was storytelling as I used stories in all my first 15 speeches.
1. And the Ice did not Break - 12 March 2009 in Croydon (when I was 10 years old...)
2. About my nose (that I did not cut at 40) - 14 April in Meridian
3. There is life after 70 years the 5 May at Lewisham
4. May I? Yes. Thanks! at Meridian the 26 May
5. Body language? (When I was kid, I killed... with my eyes) Lewisham the 17 June
6. 30 years ago, when I first came in this club (delivered in Monument club, USA) 16 July
7. Discovery is fun (Meridian) 11 August
8. The power of pause (Lewisham) 18 August
9. Tell a story! Meridian 29 August
10. Dare to share! Lewisham speakers 12 November
Then 5 stories for the Storytelling manual
- The old woman and the Death, Hungarian folk tale (told more then once)
- The inner child, Lewisham - personal tale
- Paula, great grand mother, Meridian and on stage Canal Cafee Theatre
- The red scarf, Meridian - personal history tale
- Mathias King, Meridian (he was born at the same place as me and was 1st folk tales read)
5 more speeches delivered in Toastmasters at the same time as more at Canal Café till end of 2010
At the end, I got the 1st price in Lewisham club Humorous contest delivering a speech "Dare to fail" where I told with what I failed at each of my speeches. At the same time, I learned the projects well and of course at long corrected most of the problems that happened, analysing, listening, getting back again on the saddle.
With the Revitalised Education Program of Toastmasters, we will have a lot of on-line material that can supplement what we want to learn, and videos, interactive material - all depending on our needs.
That does not mean "do not read any more", only that a lot can be delivered online for all those who prefer and got used to work thus. We still will go to our clubs, have our meeting, bonding, get feedback live and get to tell what we learned, how we progressed.