How To Add Pizzazz To Your Next Presentation

I love April Fools’ Day, and while I have pulled off some great pranks, I don’t always think of them in time. It’s kind of like when someone says something rude and you don’t think of a good comeback until hours later—usually in the middle of the night, when no one really cares anymore. This year I get to do two pranks, thanks to some quick brainstorming with the amazing graduate students I work with.

Laena, one of the graduate students in my office, has a presentation to give to her dissertation committee tomorrow. I made a joke about doing her presentation in a musical format, and the idea snowballed from there. I have created a playbill, with an attached headshot and bio, for her to present to her committee when she goes to her meeting.

I thought it would be amazing if she gave them the playbills and walked to the front of the room, where, without a word, she would tilt her head up, point to some random corner and say, “Cue music.” She would then proceed with her planned PowerPoint. It went well in rehearsal. Okay, there was no rehearsal, but I see a lot of potential in her.

Laena has given me permission to share the playbill and bio with you here. I have redacted her last name though, lest you all are so enamored with her photograph (that looks like it was taken back in the 1950s) that you start inundating her with modeling opportunities. I’m not saying she wouldn’t like that, I’m saying she would like it too much, and she still has to write her dissertation.

Wedbill Program Template(1)Screen Shot 2015-03-31 at 6.25.56 PMlH

As for the second prank, you will have to wait until tomorrow’s post.

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Letting It Fall Away

The school year is winding down and things are starting to fall into place around here. I’ve accepted a new day job where I think I will be much happier, my husband has finished his MFA in sculpture and accepted a teaching position for next year, and two out of my three children are spending the summer with grandparents.
I feel like I have spent the last two years balled up with anxiety, and now that our lives are getting back to normal I have the energy to sit down and truly write. I am so looking forward to my long weekends and quiet evenings where I can be still and let my mind fill with words that can spill out onto paper and into the hands of some interested reader. Until then, I will get my house in order—it’s always easier to write when my surroundings are clean and orderly.

Raise your glass—to writing.