Private Email to F.M. | Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking

(Posted here in case it applies to others too)

Original email to F.M.

Hi F.

I think you were keen to come to SPEAK! SPEAK!, my Adequate to Excellent one-day speaking workshop.

Central London, 29 Feb 2024, 10am to 3pm.

I sent an email letting you know you can get a discount if you order before midnight today. I’m not sure if you got the email, and want to be sure you don’t miss out.


I added the following text ⬇️⬇️ and sent a link to this page by text

Actually, while I’ve got you

(If I have got you, and if this doesn’t end up in your junk folder)

My plan is to send in advance (starting today) materials drawn from classical rhetoric, so you can plan your talk / speech / presentation before we meet on 29 Feb.

If classical rhetoric sounds like a yawn – it really isn’t. It’s terrific. Here’s a drawing of Me In Specs On A Greek Vase, just to give a sense of how much it amuses and pleases me:

I'm the one on the right.

Fun, Fun, Fun

I like teaching classical rhetoric because it seems so deeply unfashionable – and it connects me to the great traditions of Ancient Greece, Rome, the Bible, Shakespeare – you name it.

If you want to make classical rhetoric even more fun, try doing it “all wrong”.

You’ll soon see that if you don’t follow the basic principles your speaking will be – er, less than ideal (and less fun for everyone).

QED, as they used to say: Rhetoric is fun.

But Anyway…

On 29 Feb we’ll meet and focus on aspects of Delivery (which, as it happens, is the fifth and last part of classical rhetoric).

My aim is to make you confident either

  • delivering your prepared talk
  • chucking it aside and improvising because – let’s face it – sometimes the prepared material is not appropriate any more.

Improvise? You?

Crumbs! How can you possibly do that?

Well, I’ll teach you with exercises I did myself when I trained in Impro with the late great Keith Johnstone, author of The Book:

Drawing by me of my own well-thumbed copy.

Till You Are Blasé

AND… I’ll encourage you to record videos, with help from others there, into your own phone.

I want you to do it again and again so that you become blasé (Dictionary: unimpressed with or indifferent to something because one has experienced or seen it so often before.)

You’ll be able to use the video subsequently in all kinds of social media shenanigans or whatever.

Last year, I ran an online version of this course. One of the participants said that the mere process of learning to make videos made her think again from first principles about her entire approach to work.

“What am I actually doing with my life? What do I want to focus on?” she said.

(Or words to that effect, but I confess I’m quoting from memory.)


I just thought I’d mention this

You may already have a sense of what I have planned on 29 Feb. You may have received my email and decided this is Not For You.

But it’s possible that you didn’t see the email.

Or you did get it, and have some questions.

Please ask!

You’ll be doing me a favour, because it’s quite possible that others have the same questions.

I’m excited to get started.

Best wishes


PS. If you DON’T have questions and just want to get the discount…

Please check your emails for the discount code.

As you see, the offer to F.M. has expired

Who’s next?

There will be another course soon.

To join the waiting list, please add your email below, and I’ll be in touch with more details: