Categories
Speaking

Speaking Engagements – Why Bother?

CAN Hi.  Winnie Griggs here.

Over the next several months I’m going to be posting about speaking engagements – why seek them out, how to get booked, what to speak about, etc.  Since my personal experience with this subject is in speaking to groups of writers, that’s going to be my main focus.  However, much of this will translate to other type speaking engagements as well.

Categories
Encouragement Speaking

A Time to Speak…

SusieChairGreetings, Dear Friends!

Susie Larson here!

I post on the last Thursday of each month about the topic of building a speaking platform. Today I want to explore the idea of when it is okay to share about a personal heartache or trial, and when it is better to hold it for a while.

While I do believe that sometimes God calls us to step up and share a vulnerable story (while we are right in the midst of it all), most of the time wisdom calls us to give it time, to get on the other side of it, and to wipe the dirt off of the spoils from our war.

The thing is, certain types of pain produce amazing testimonies right in the midst of the pain, while other types of heartache require a time of healing and understanding.

For instance, I have heard of parents who have lost a child and who stood up and spoke about their loss with power and conviction only days after their tragedy. And, after hearing their testimony, many came to Christ. Absolutely amazing.

But when it comes to divorce, betrayal, or any kind of relational break down, those messages need time for healing, understanding, and even wisdom about what is best to share, and what is best to hold. Furthermore, when our stories involve other people, we need to be respectful of their story.

Categories
Encouragement Speaking

With Fear and Trembling

Author, Jeanette Hanscome

Hello from Jeanette. Today I spent 20 minutes in the backseat of our car with a trembling 50-lb dog. Car rides turn our pit mix, Belle, into a spineless mutt. They trigger memories of shots and other unpleasant vet visits. I assured Belle that we were only going to PetSmart to get her nails trimmed but she continued to squeal and pace, starring helplessly out the window, silently pleading to passersby, “Help me! I’m on my way to the manicurist. It’s so scary there.” I teased Belle about being a big baby, reminded her of her bread, but nothing worked. We dragged her into PetSmart, handed her over to the torturers  . . . I mean the guy with the clippers, and waited for the wails. Of course we heard none. Like a two-year-old who only cries long enough to make Mom feel guilty for leaving her in the church nursery, she was fine as soon as we walked away with our receipt. We returned in ten minutes to a relaxed dog. The clipping was over. And it wasn’t so bad. In fact, judging from the look on her face, it felt good to have those claws out of the way. All that whimpering for nothing.

So what does this have to do with writing, speaking, and book promotion? A lot, actually.

Categories
Encouragement Speaking

Speak Life!

SusieChair

Greetings, Dear Friends!

Susie Larson here…

I post on the last Thursday of each month, which these days, puts me on holidays. Oh, well. 🙂 My monthly theme is around building a speaking platform.

When was the last time you had a conversation with someone, and something they said about knocked you over? Maybe it was one word or a short phrase or a word picture, but when those words went into your ears, your heart beat faster and maybe your cheeks even felt flush. Does that ever happen to you?

Sometimes those moments happen while watching a movie, reading a book, or listening to a song. Such moments are now-moments when God is speaking to us and we’d do well to slow down and really listen to what the Creator of the Universe is saying to us.

Prior to every new speaking season, I spend some significant time in prayer and I ask God for a few inheritance verses for my upcoming season. And since faith pleases Him, I also ask Him what I can believe Him for – what He wants me to reach up for and lay hold of. Surprisingly, one of the things God asked me to believe Him for was for many more now-words for my audience.

Let me explain.

Categories
Encouragement Speaking

Great Expectations!

SusieLarson051

Happy Thanksgiving, Friends!

Susie Larson here…

I doubt very many of you will be visiting this blog in light of the holiday but it’s my day to post and I hope to encourage whoever stops by!

I’m scheduled to post on the fourth Thursday of every month. I apologize for being AWOL last month. Between my travels and my work load, I just couldn’t get it done. So sorry.

Today I want to explore the idea of expectations. By definition, expectation is a belief that someone will or should achieve something.

We’ve all felt the pain of disappointment when someone has failed to meet our expectations. Some of our assumptions were legitimate, others, misplaced. Even so, human as we are, we are going to disappoint one another.

What does this have to do with speaking?

Categories
Speaking Writing craft

Still Proclaiming!

Ecuador retreat 09    Hey, friends! Jennifer Devlin again. For this second post of the week, I’m switching hats from a “board” post to a “speaker” post. Bear with me; I’d like to continue the thought I started earlier this week. Let’s think about our drive to proclaim the gospel — now in our speaking rather than our writing.

I included this specific photo because it reminds me of a wonderful opportunity I had to speak to a group of believers. We spent the weekend encouraging, teaching, training and discipling. We shared meals, Scripture, prayers and hearts. We experienced a bigger sense of God’s family. And, the team I took with me got to see a glimpse into the power of selfless ministry not experienced every day here in the fast paced lives we lead.

Categories
Encouragement Speaking

Humble Yourself and Hone Your Craft

SusieLarson051

Hello, Friends!

Susie Larson here…

I post on the fourth Thursday of every month and I’m thankful to share this time with you. Last month I shared the story of how I got my start in speaking. This month I want us to take a closer look behind the scenes.

In the fall and spring seasons, I travel about three weekends out of four. During the winter months, I drop back to only one or two weekend events per month. Often, as I’m out and about, women share with me how they feel sure God has called them to become a conference speaker. I think that’s wonderful! The world is full of hurting, desperate people and there is enough work to go around for all of us.

Categories
Speaking

From Written Word to Spoken Word

Headshot glassesFrom Written Word to Spoken Word

Tips by author and speaker Cheri Cowell

One of the most frequent questions asked of me at writer’s conferences is “If I speak on my book and tell them everything that is in there, why would they then buy the book?” When I first began writing and speaking, I was fearful of the same thing. However, I quickly learned three valuable lessons.

1. Lesson One: Don’t Speak on Your Book- Speak on a Topic for Your Target Audience

You’ve seen it on television, the “expert” author who’s every other word is, “In my book…” Even worse, they tease the audience, only giving two of six tips “available in their book.” These self-promotional gimmicks rarely cause someone to run out and buy the promoted book, and often has the opposite effect, causing resentment not future readers. The solution is to not speak directly on the information covered in your book, but instead look through your book for jumping off topics.

Categories
Ministry Speaking

Speaking: How I got my start…

 

SusieLarson051
Susie Larson

Greetings, Friends!

Susie Larson here…
I’ll be here on the fourth Thursday of every month to chat with you about the ins and outs of developing a speaking platform. Please feel free to ask questions along the way.

 

First, please allow me give you a little background on how I got started as a speaker. God built my platform out of the ashes of my pain. When I was a young mom battling a vicious disease (and the financial hardships that followed), I wondered if God had lost my address. My prayers seemed to bounce off the ceiling and God seemed especially silent. Then one day a woman from my church called and said the most amazing thing to me:
Susie, I’ve heard about all of the hardships you and your family are going through and I took those concerns to God in prayer. The Lord showed me a picture of a platform that He’s building with your pain. Lean in and learn everything you can during this time, then you’ll have something to say when you get to the other side of this painful journey.”
 
That’s all I needed to hear. God was up to something. In spite of the fear, fatigue, and despair that swirled around me, I leaned in. I listened. I took lots of notes. And I trusted God.
One day, out of the blue, I received a call from the leader of a MOPS group. Somehow she had heard about me and wanted me to share my story with her women. I was a weak, scared, and wounded little bird, but God used me in my weakness. And thus began – from very small beginnings – my speaking ministry.
For me, every new stage of growth in this ministry has always been preceded by a deep (and somewhat painful) character cleansing time. I now know to lean in and learn during those refining times so that I can stand strong in the next place He has for me.
That blessed phone call came about 17 years ago and in His wisdom, God has established my platform in pace with the ages of my kids and with the state of my health. Now that my kids are grown and I have the time, I’m running to keep up with it all. I’m represented by a wonderful national agency (Ambassador Speaker’s Bureau) and my platform is steadily growing. I say no to more events than I say yes to, but I have to in order to keep up with my writing and the occasional radio work that I do. It took a while, but now I’ve got some great momentum and to tell you the truth, I’m hanging on to the Vine for dear life!
I tell you all of this to encourage you. If you have a heart to speak…lean in – right where you are – and learn everything you can from your current season of life. Take lots of notes. Notice how God is working all around you. Be a student of God’s Word and a helper of the human condition. Be faithful right where you stand. Be fruitful with what you have. And believe Him for open doors and new opportunities.
God wants to use you more than you want to be used by Him!
Next month my blog topic will be: Hone Your Craft and Humble Yourself. 
Until then~
Be blessed, my friend.
Susie Larson

 

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