In an incredible stroke of good luck, I got to be the keynote speaker at the Rotary District 6270 Conference this weekend. The poor guy who was supposed to be the speaker had his flight canceled and couldn’t make it. When I had finished speaking at my workshop and overheard the conference organizers worrying about what to do–only 60 minutes before lunch and no keynote speaker–I eagerly volunteered to fill in. Apparently, not too many people volunteer to speak in front of 150+ people for 45 minutes, because at first they thought I was joking. But with a speech ready-to-go (thank you MacBook), lots of familiar faces in the audience, and an opportunity to promote my book reaching out to me–there was no reason NOT to volunteer. A few of the reasons I am always grateful to have the opportunity to speak before a captive audience:
- Nothing feels better than having to wait for an entire room of people to stop laughing at one of my jokes so I can continue (cracking them up.)
- I get to talk (sometimes about myself) for 45 minutes without interruptions
- Because most people are terrified of public speaking, people seem to think I have some type of special power and say really nice things to me after my talk
- Sometimes, I see people crying because they’re so touched by my stories. (Other times, I see them sleeping, but I tend to try and ignore those moments)
- People clap for me and will occasionally give me a standing ovation, which makes me feel great and allows me to hold on to the dream of fame and fortune.
- More often than you would think, someone comes up to me after the speech and asks me if a lot of people tell me I look like Claire Danes
- Being upgraded to a Keynote speaker increased book sales ten-fold!