Speeches, Speeches, and More Speeches

Ann H Gabhart Ann's Posts, One Writer's Journal

Monday I get the fun of going to my granddaughters’ school and speaking to their classes. I’m nervous. Well, not really about the speaking, but about making the girls proud. I’ll be all right with the young one in first grade, but the older girl is a teenager. Thank goodness, a very sweet and kind teenager so maybe she won’t crawl under her desk when grandma comes in the school.

I do like to talk to young people about writing, especially the elementary age kids. They always have so many neat questions. Sometimes when I talk to adults, there’s an uncomfortable silence when I ask if anyone has any questions. Stage fright for the question asker, I think. They don’t want to ask something that others might think dumb. Usually if someone will break the ice and take the risk of speaking up, the question time gets rolling. But kids don’t have that worry. They like to ask questions. They want to know more. As our pastor sometimes likes to say, there are no dumb questions because how are you going to find out more without asking. Now I don’t know about the no dumb questions. There are probably a few. But if a kid asks me a question I don’t want to answer, I can usually gracefully twist the question to something I don’t mind answering. So we’ll have fun.

Then tomorrow night I’ll be at the Ohio River Festival of Books in Huntington, WV. I’m looking forward to talking to some readers there at the Cabell County Public Library. Darrell isn’t getting to go with me this time, so he’ll miss out on hearing me tell the same stuff again. Fresh ears (as in the Book Festival attendees) are always nice. It’s when you go back to the same group the second or third time that you have to start wondering if you’ve already told them everything you have to say. Of course with a new book, that’s like having a fresh topic. And the people who’ve heard you before can finally get up the nerve to ask that question they’ve been wanting to ask. You may be able to tell I like the question and answer time of a talk. I’d like to just go straight to that the way you might want to go straight to the dessert on the buffet table. The Festival people gave my speech an interesting title – “Shaker Romance: Not an Oxymoron.” Guess I’d better figure out what an oxymoron is before I start talking. 😉

Hope you all have a beautiful Sunday and enjoy the flowers of spring.