Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Taking the #7links challenge: 7 special posts

Darren Rowse's Problogger just issued a 7 link challenge to bloggers, and I'm taking it with this post, organized by the challenge's format.  I hope it gives you some insight into how I view these posts:

  1. Your first post:  My first post for this blog was on Lady Bird: From Shy to Shining, about Lady Bird Johnson, whose extensive speaking career happened despite her terrible anxiety about speaking in public.  When I stumbled upon the story of how she willed herself to come in third in her high school class to avoid speaking at her graduation (she was the top student), I knew I'd found an inspiring story.
  2. A post you enjoyed writing the most:  Say it in your own voice, girlfriend! was actually a guest post I wrote for Kate's Voice, the blog of vocal coach Kate Peters, who asked me to riff on "finding your voice," a topic I'd been mulling for some time. Nothing like having someone  give you an assignment to make it happen. I liked the result so much I posted it here on my blog.
  3. A post which had a great discussion:  I think the best discussions happen on The Eloquent Woman on Facebook, but on the actual blog, there are two that stand out. First, The object in danah boyd's Web 2.0 talk, about an expert speaker whose talk included a Twitter stream projected behind her, with tweets from men in the audience wondering what it would be like to "do" her, while she was talking. That post showed the full range of views on the topic, a controversial one.  The second is a more recent post asking readers "Who are you? What are you looking for here?"  The responses--which are still coming in--demonstrate the willingness of this blog's readers to share their motivations, challenges and questions with us all.
  4. A post on someone else’s blog that you wish you’d written:  Olivia Mitchell's How to simplify your presentation without dumbing it down gets at a question I get all the time from scientists and technical experts I'm training--in her usual straightforward and authoritative style.
  5. A post with a title that you are proud of:  On this blog, my best headlines come out of real reader questions, and Graceful ways with Q&A came right out of one reader's request for "Graceful ways to bring off-topic questions (sometimes relative, sometimes absolute) back to the body of the talk when Q&A veers off-course."
  6. A post that you wish more people had read:  Our society's assumptions about women speakers, and women who speak up, are so ingrained that I've made a point of highlighting research that busts those myths.  4 myths to stop about women and public speaking busts a hole in the most-repeated ones I've heard.
  7. Your most-visited post ever: It's 5 stealth ways to find time to practice, which tells me my readers don't feel they have enough prep time.  A basic but useful post, based on reader traffic.
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