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GoldenKeyesParsonsGolden Keyes Parsons here in Central Texas where the leaves are just beginning to turn and fall. We don’t have near the beautiful color in our trees as in New England or the Rockies where the aspen turn the mountains to gold, but every now and then one will see a tree showing off its color.

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It is also a popular season for retreats and luncheons, so let’s continue with our Speaker Do’s and Don’ts. We discussed five last time: 1. DO speak on your passion. 2. DO speak to the listener’s heart. 3. DO be aware of the doctrine of the group. 4. DO keep a bag ready with things to take. 5. DO remember the speaker is always on stage.

6.DO END ON TIME. Be considerate of the timetable of the group and the facility where you are meeting. Is a meal waiting to be served? Get the people out in time for that meal. Has the group been sitting through other speakers for a long time? Be aware and give them a break. One time at a women’s tea, I was the keynote speaker and had been to speak for about an hour. Several women gave “testimonies” beforehand and used up all but 15 minutes of the time allotted. What did I do? I condensed my talk and ended in 15 minutes!

7. DO ACKNOWLEDGE OTHER PROFESSIONALS PRESENT. Many times you will be one of several speakers. Listen to what they have to say and tie in with them. And if another author is in the audience, please be courteous and humble and introduce her. Give honor to whom honor is due.

8. DO LOVE EVEN THOSE WHO OPPOSE YOU. It won’t be unusual for someone to disagree with you. Smile and nod, and thank them for coming to you.

9. DO HAND OUT EVALUATION SHEETS (not so much for a one-day event, but for retreats). Take what is said in stride and improve what you need to improve and sift what you need to sift.

10. DO WRITE THANK YOU NOTES. I know this is becoming somewhat thought of as old-fashioned, but it is never wrong to be gracious. Write thank-you notes to those who invited you and to anyone who assisted you … your hostess, booktable help, rides, etc.

Next time we will discuss some writer “Don’ts” in Part 3 of this series. In the meantime, DO be thankful and have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. Please visit my web site at www.goldenkeyesparsons.com. I’d be ever so thankful!

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