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Work hard on the content and practise to become an expert public speaker: Derek O'Brien

Updated: February 15, 2013, 5:19 PM IST
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Work hard on the content and practise to become an expert public speaker: Derek O'Brien
Author and TMC MP, Derek O' Brien, joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on his book 'Speak Up, Speak Out'.

Are you stumped about what to speak at the upcoming elocution contest? Are you tired of surfing the Internet searching for apiece that is right for you? Are you wondering how you can speak more confidently? Then this handy collection is just what you need. In Speak Up, Speak Out you will find: Poetry, prose and speeches suitable for junior, middle and senior school students. An introduction to each piece by Derek, along with his recommendations on how best to deliver it. Derek's tips on how to become an expert public speaker. Classic and rare writings by masters such as Roald Dahl, Vikram Seth, Ruskin Bond, Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela and Barack Obama, among many others. Derek O' Brien will take you into a world of literary masterpieces and you will discover that all you need to be a winner is to speak up, and speak it right!

The author and TMC MP, Derek O' Brien, joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on his book 'Speak Up, Speak Out: My Favourite Elocution Pieces & How To Deliver Them'.

Q. Sir, Please give top 5 tips for public speaking from your book. Asked by: BS

A. 1. Be yourself 2. Work hard on the content 3. Practice 4. Do not come across as arrogant 5. Again, practice.

Q. Missing BQC and you too! So, when shall we see both of you on the small screen? Asked by: Sandeep Rao

A. Thank you for your kind words. Yes, the Bournvita Quiz Contest has been on since 1993 on TV. The show in 2013 will go on air in a few months on Colors. 15 brand new episodes for this year!

Q. Which is your favourite non-fiction book concerning India in recent times? Asked by: Sachin

A. I'm currently reading a book called Durbar by Tavleen Singh. Has some interesting insights (many of which I do not agree with) of politics in India in the 1970s and 80s.

Q. How to narrate an event or incident in an interesting way? Asked by: Sneha

A. Good question. I would suggest maintaining a diary is a good idea. You can always refer to it when you want to refer to an event or incident. First, make a structure or a flow of what you want to say. I use bullet points. Refer to these points and tell your story.

Q. How to be an effective communicator & convince people? Asked by: sri

A. Ha! Ha! That's why you need to buy 'Speak Up, Speak Out'. I hope it will help answer your question.

Q. Sir, How do I check whether I am practicing my public speaking in a right way? Asked by: AP

A. Tough question. Let me try and give you an answer. You may want to ask a close friend of yours to see you do some public speaking at home... ask him for feedback. Then, may be after a week, do it again. You will soon see improvements.

Q. Thanks, Mr Derek. Have you gone through 'India After Gandhi'? It narrates all the socio-political events in an amazingly researched manner... Asked by: Sachin

A. I agree with you... it's a superb book.

Q. Sir, I went to a Bengali medium school....I don't speak out in English properly...what to do? Asked by: shubhasree

A. No problem at all. There's no better power in the world than being a great speaker in your mother tongue. Speak Up, Speak Out in Bangla... no problem at all!

Q. How would you change your style when reciting poetry and when you are doing a prose piece? Asked by: Sudeshna

A. Aha! I think my new book 'Speak Up, Speak Out' (Rupa, Rs. 195/-) has an answer to your question. Each piece has a commentary to try and guide the reader along... prose, poems - and how to deliver them.

Q. I want to be a writer too. Can you give some tips? Asked by: Farhan

A. I think Ruskin Bond is the best person to answer your question. May be I shall ask him to do a live chat on Derek.in very shortly. He is such a lovely human being... and what a great writer!

Q. What will you write next? Asked by: Prabhu

A. For 2013 the plan is 2-3 quiz books and a new series for self improvement. That is all I can say at the moment, otherwise my publishers - Penguin & Rupa, will accuse me of revealing their trade secrets.

Q. What was the inspiration or force that made you write it? Asked by: Gunjan

A. I've actually answered this question in the introduction to the book... "Over the years, I have regularly received pleas for help. My friends have called: 'Hey Nikhil needs a good piece for his elocution competition. What do you recommend?'... After answering these frantic queries for years, I thought why not compile a book?!

Q. People advise me, to give the speech with out looking at the audience..,(Head slightly down)This, they say, will remove my fear syndrome and I can be more fluent... what do you say? Asked by: Sunder56

A. No. That is not the solution. That may be a start to help you in the beginning. First try and speak into a mirror. Practice, practice, practice - in front of a mirror. Then, when you speak to a small group you will feel a lot more confident.

Q. Okay sir...you R my idol..Pls wish me for my H.S exm starts 13 march... Asked by: shubhasree

A. All the best for your exams starting on March 13... by the way... that is my birthday :)

Q. I represented my school in BQC but couldn't make to the stage. Must say, during my childhood, there hasn't been a week, wherein we used to talk about a person called 'Derek O'Brien'. Happy to recollect all the good old memories. Asked by: Sandeep Rao

A. Thanks so much. It was wonderful spending these 30 minutes chatting to you all. Hope you enjoy my new book 'Speak Up, Speak Out: My Favourite Elocution Pieces & How To Deliver Them'. Good bye. God bless. Mera Bharat mahaan.

First Published: February 15, 2013, 5:19 PM IST
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