Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Public Speaker and the Grasshopper*

Online, people come in clans. One such clan is the group of internet copywriters who are part of Clayton Makepeaces blog called The Total Package. It’s Claytons’ blog, so he provides much of the content. But he does have a “clan” of other copywriter friends who often contribute to this site.

They include, Troy White, Bob Bly, Yanik Silver, Gary Bencivenga, MaryEllen Tribby, Carline Anglade-Cole and Michel Fortin and others. But my favorite is Daniel Levis*. He is a very successful writer and an incredible thinker. I learn from everyone of his posts.

One such post is entitled, , , Why the Old Rules of Authority No Longer Apply. He spin a dazzling story that starts off, “In the beginning, , ,”

His tale encompasses four-fifths of his post and is very, very informative and entertaining.

But then, near the end of his article, he jumps into real meaningful insight, , , insight that can be helpful to any public speaker. It starts with his sub-headline, “Here’s where you come in, grasshopper*. . .”

“Grasshopper?” He means that you (the insignificant beginning speaker or publisher, etc.) are about to discover how to hop out of obscurity and become a world-class expert in any field you choose.

Side Note: Students, even middle school speech students, , , you can use the principles discussed in this article, , , so keep reading and, as Jeff Herring would say, “Go Use This Stuff,” (GUTS).

And Levis is going to show you how. There’s a huge body of information on any topic out there. But it is raw, , , not fit for human consumption.
The libraries and bookstores are jamb-packet a great verity of stuff. Thousands of volumes of books and magazines are there in physical form for you to study.

And, online, there are the wiki’s, , , Wikipedia being “the king of the hill.”

And, then there are the general articles (like this one) all over the internet, , , millions of them.

And, the academic papers and reports. While most are extremely reliable, the problem is they’re almost impossible for the average person to read. Way to many seven-syllable words in them!

Add to all this info, the forums, blogs and all the social media websites. The information on any given subject seems infinite.
Go Grasshopper!
People need to understand as much as they need to belong. The established experts in every field, who write all this stuff mentioned above, write “over peoples’ head.”

For this raw data to be understood by common folk, someone (you) must shuffle through it all and make useful sense of it.

Then they must re-package “What They Need” into information they both understand, in words they use every day and are able to put into practice immediately in their work and lives.
That’s where your speeches, presentations, books, articles, blogs, and home study courses come in.
Pick a Field
I challenge you, , , you can become an expert in anything you want. Just do it. What are you waiting for? Maybe you’ve already decided on your topic. OK! Climb up there and get a bunch of that raw stuff “down off the shelves” and start putting it into useful form, written in everyday words.

You can become a translator of academic writings. Or a master re-editor of books and magazines. Or a highly efficient surfer for real information online, , , quickly sifting through forums, blogs and articles, etc. You can!

And when you’ve fully developed these skills, you will have become the most valuable expert of all. One who’s stuff really works!


P.S. And I have a visual aid prepared for you to use if you would like to teach this lesson.

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