OUT NOW: A Modest Book About How To Make An Adequate Speech

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Virtually anybody who ever made an impact in the world did so by appearing in front of others and sharing ideas.

But public speaking fills many people with terror. This holds back the individual, and deprives the world of something wonderful.

Learning the essentials is like giving yourself a handrail to hold onto as you step into the spotlight.

Hi, I’m John-Paul Flintoff. This part of my website is about the art of Speaking Well Enough. It builds on A Modest Book About How To Make An Adequate Speech (available in all good bookshops) with practical videos and downloads to follow.

I don’t think I’ve ever been quite so pleased to get a book published. Here I am, showing it to my splendid agent, Jaime Marshall, as soon as I took delivery of the first box.

Other books have brought their own (considerable) thrill, but this is the first since my 2018 breakdown and it feels like I’ve been put back on my feet as a writer.

Please forgive a few more photos. (Click to the right on this Instagram post.)

EDIT: The offer of free artwork is closed, now – sorry.

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First Review on Amazon

The first review on Amazon seemed so very comprehensive I thought it might be useful to repost it here:

This is a very unconventional ‘rhetorical handbook’. It couldn’t be more unlike rivals in this market: Sam Leith, Mark Forsyth and Jay Heinrichs.

Flintoff draws his water from many wells. He blends Ciceronian insights with impro techniques, homiletics with after-dinner speaking, TED talks with Churchillian oratory.

We get Flintoff’s personal journey, but he manages to be rigorous in the application of the theory of public speaking. We are moved, entertained and instructed in that order.

Flintoff strains to be warm, friendly and self-deprecating, but his modesty often conceals a highly intuitive and sensitive mind, capable of seeing an opportunity under pressure and turning it to his advantage. One of the most powerful tools of the best public speakers, is to tell us they’re not very good at this stuff.

We get self-lacerating insights into John Paul’s vulnerability, which some readers might find hard to read. He’s very honest about how audiences react very differently to his style of speaking.

In a fascinating passage he shows how he learnt in an impro class that we really can’t control how an audience will react to us, it’s very much how those immediately around us react to us that will determine what the outcome is. The important thing is to genuinely love your audience. That tends to rub off.

I’ve been reading about this subject for 30 years. This book manages to offer many fresh and memorable insights into my trade and makes an ‘elite’ subject relevant and compelling to everyone who wants to be an effective citizen.

More reviews, please

I’m very grateful to the writer of that review (EDIT: and the ones that came after). If you too have read the book, please take a sec to post your own review.

After all, the better people understand what the book is – and what it isn’t – the more likely they are to avoid disappointment.

You can leave your review (or buy the book!) here:

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If you represent an organisation and would like me to speak, please jp at this domain name, Jaime Marshall.

If you’re an individual, looking to improve your speaking, see this page.

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