Words on Presentations

Presentation Norman West Library-04
I’ve had the honor of being invited to speak at the Norman Public Library West about my Uncovering Oklahoma Date Idea Books. My first presentation was on Friday, February 20. This was first time I gave a talk about myself, what I do, and my travels. I enjoy talking to people about places, so I knew talking in front of crowd, about something I was passionate, I would be comfortable.

Before the event though, I sent a tweet out to one of my favorite writers, Neil Gaiman, asking for advice. To my joy, and later embarrassment of the typo I made, he responded. The conversation went as such:

Twitter Chat with Neil

Wisdom I kept in mind.

The subject of my first talk was road trip ideas. I spoke about such places as Talimena National Scenic Byway, Heavener Runestone Park, Center of the Universe, Chickasaw National Recreation Area, Arbuckle Wilderness, and a few others. Overall, the presentation was about 20 minutes.

The feedback I received on the first presentation was it was okay, however, people wanted it to be be longer and more in-depth. They also suggested to have more pictures, give a prize, show off the Uncovering Oklahoma site, and share some videos.

Presentation at Norman West Library

I took everyone’s comments and the next time I spoke in March on the subject of date ideas, it was nearly an hour long. Fewer people showed up for the second one–partly due to bad timing as it was also spring break and there were St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. Despite the lackluster turnout, I felt way better about everything and I enjoyed myself. Plus, I have a solid presentation for future use and I got pictures of me speaking to add to my resumé.

To recap what I’ve learned:

1. Know What To Say
2. Breathe
3. Pace, don’t rush
4. Pictures are awesome
5. Have text with slides for viewer note taking
6. Video clips are awesome too (doesn’t have to have sound to be effective)
7. Give something away
8. Investigate surrounding days for scheduling conflicts
9. Enjoy It
10. It’s Public Speaking – Not Pubic Speaking

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Warm Wishes

Warm Wishes by Dennis Spielman
Despite the snow, the spring line of shoes are on display at Shoetopia, wishing for the warmth of spring.

Gear: Canon Rebel t3i
Lens Model: EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II
Focal Length: 39
Max Aperture Value: 5.04
ISO: 100

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Interview with Billy Sims

Billy Sims BBQ is Tulsa-based fast casual concept serving premium BBQ smoked daily in-house with traditional sides. Founded by 1978 Heisman Trophy winner Billy Sims, and cofounder Jeff Jackson, Billy Sims BBQ is a unique franchise concept that is one of the top rated celebrity and athlete-owned restaurants.

To promote the limited-time “All You Can Eat Rib Night” on Tuesdays, I had the pleasure of interviewing Billy Sims himself at the Norman location. Sims was a kind and energetic interview. He’s one of the bigger celebrity interviews I’ve done, on camera at least. I kept the focus of the interview on the restaurant and food because Uncovering Oklahoma is a travel positive site and I didn’t want to do anything that could damage chances of future interviews with other people.

For this video, I experimented with a one camera back-and-forth question and answer style. I concluded this style would work best if I had at least a second camera and mic on myself. A good note for the future. I am happy with the audio quality on Sims himself with the mic and audio settings I used.

2015-02-19 Billy Sims BBQ-01

After the interview, I had the Heisman Sandwich with mac and cheese. It kept me full well into dinner. To me, the restaurant was like Swadley’s or Rib Crib, but sports themed.

Anyway, that’s my interview with Billy Sims.

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Book Buzz: Dennis Spielman

Book Buzz with Dennis SpielmanOn Friday, February 20 2015 I will be at Norman West Public Library to speak about Uncovering Oklahoma’s Date Idea Book series, Uncovering Oklahoma in general, and I’ll give a presentation on road trip ideas. This is going to be my first public speaking event. I would love it if you could come out and support me.

After the presentation, I will be available for book singing and meeting up with everyone. There be copies of The Crashing of Heaven and Hell and Uncovering Oklahoma’s Date Idea Book available for sale.

Talk starts 6:30pm in Michelangelos Café.

Event Details at Pioneer Library
Event Invite on Facebook

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Uncovering Oklahoma’s Date Idea Book for 2015

Hello, readers!

Today I have released the new edition of Uncovering Oklahoma’s Date Idea Book! Inside the book you will uncover a wealth of romantic, fantastic, creative, and local places for amazing, fun, and unique dates.

My date idea book was written with all types of couples and dates in mind to show that there is something fun out there for everyone and to help expand the concept of date night beyond the standard “dinner and a movie.” This book features various suggestions for a night (or afternoon) out in different parts of Oklahoma, along with pictures and quotes from people about why they think a particular place makes for a great date spot. And while the focus of the book is date ideas, it isn’t limited to starry-eyed couples. Feel free to grab some of your friends, pick an adventure from these pages, and go!

The paperback version of the book is available through Amazon.com for a list price of $17.

It’s also available as a $2.99 ebook on Kindle, Apple’s iTunes/iBooks, Nook, and Google Play! This year I was able to have the eBook released from all of the various places at the same time as the book. I’m also happy that this edition is available for the Nook as last year due to a large file size, it was not accepted.

On Friday, February 20, 2015 I will be at Norman West Public Library to speak about myself, my date idea book, Uncovering Oklahoma, and I’ll give a presentation on road trip ideas. After my presentation, I will be available for book singing and meeting up with everyone. Event details here.

The focus of this edition of the date idea book was corrections–removing places no longer in business, and adding new ideas to make up for the lost ones. When I set out to revise the book, I ended up making more changes than I thought I would. I’m excited to release this new edition to keep people tied over as I’m working on a new adventure book to be released later this year.

Your purchase helps support Uncovering Oklahoma and me becoming a full-time writer. Check it out for great times year round.

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