The art of being on a panel

Guy Kawasaki provides some top tips on how to be on a discussion panel. I’m going to try to take his advice to heart, as I’m going to be on the Promoting Your Blog and Building Traffic panel at Northern Voice in Vancouver on 19 Feb. I’ll be batting ideas around with Jeremy Wright, Derek K. Miller and Chris Pirillo, all of whom I am very excited about meeting.

I’ve not spoken at a conference before, so I have to admit to being a wee bit nervous about it. I’m relying on the fact that I used to lecture occasionally about the History of British Popular Music from 1980 to present at Thames Valley University (and any of you from the Thames Valley area will realise just how big an achievement that isn’t) as an indicator that I am actually capable of speaking publicly without turning either into a rabbit-trapped-in-headlights or a gibbering fool. By the end of my stint at TVU I no longer got that hyped-to-the-eyeballs feeling before the lecture, but then, I no longer got that amazing smack-round-the-face buzz afterwards either.

However, if I start discussing the impact of Duran Duran on music videos and the development of MTV, you know I’ve regressed a bit too far. Equally, if I start cracking unfunny jokes, you know I’ve regressed even further to my (brief) stint as a stand-up comic in the early 90s back when comedy was the new rock and roll and I foolishly thought that I could make a living out of jabbering in a terrified manner in front of an audience*. Either result could be entertaining, so be sure to be there just in case.

If you’re in the Vancouver area on the 19th then it’s worth going – registration is only $20 CAN and you’re getting a great day for your money. If you happen to see me on the day, feel free to come up and say hello. I will be the slightly dazed-looking blonde Brit bint.

* Compared to my current career trajectory which involves foolishly thinking I can make a living out of jabbering in a slightly less terrified manner in front of an audience.