Finding Your Voice by Mary Atkins

Ten Steps to Successful Public Speaking

No matter what the occasion, this book will help turn your good ideas into great speeches!

Finding Your Voice is a book that can be used by anyone, from an amateur speaker facing a special occasion to the professional presenter.

If you are brand new to speaking in public, this book will help you overcome your reservations as you learn how to craft and deliver a speech with self-belief.

For speakers who have already been ‘blooded’, you will find some good reading in revisiting advice and suggestions that you may know, but about which you may have become a little blasé. The information and knowledge in the book will be useful to any speaker, at any stage of their speaking career.


Philosophically, the most important message in this book is to be ‘true to yourself’. Anyone can learn to stand up and speak, and do so competently. But when a speaker manages to connect, using words and posture that come from their very being, they really communicate with their audience.

When a speaker masters the fear of being him- or herself, that is when real self-development begins. Too often we allow the mantle of others’ opinions to define us. Finding your authentic voice is challenging, but if you adopt the habit of seeking your own truth as you prepare for any public-speaking activity, you will soon be able to overcome any self-limiting beliefs.


Part 1 of Finding Your Voice gives you ten easy, confidence-building steps to becoming a successful speaker. These steps provide you with information on how to develop your speech, how to research any necessary resources, and then present it with style and poise. It also incorporates other information that is vital to achieving this success. This includes breathing techniques for better voice production, as well as advice on the care of the voice.

You will also find practical information about how to use audiovisual equipment. There is material designed to help you understand and manage stage fright, and a chapter that illustrates the polish and shine of assuming a professional approach to public speaking.


Part 2 looks at a range of speaking assignments where public-speaking skills are in demand. These include occasions such as delivering a eulogy, giving an expression of thanks or a speech of acceptance, acting as master of ceremonies or emcee, interviewing someone, acting as chairperson of a meeting, presenting a workshop or conference speech, giving a testimonial speech, being a member of a panel of speakers, taking part in a debate, giving an after-dinner or humorous speech, managing media interviews and giving a demonstration.

Used together, these two parts of Finding Your Voice give you the knowledge and guidelines you need to achieve success every time, no matter what the speaking engagement. Each chapter makes use of the elements that you would use in writing a speech: there is a liberal use of quotations, some anecdotal stories, and, at the core, basic information to guide and build your knowledge of speaking in public.


A series of hints and advice gives the reader the opportunity to gain from the experiences of people who make their living from public speaking. These contributors come from different backgrounds, including a strong contingent from the electronic media. Their thoughts, comments, ideas and advice, learned from hard-won experience, are featured as Celebrity Tips throughout the book.

Celebrities include:

  • Toni Childs, Emmy Award winning American singer and songwriter
  • Shannon Fricke, on-air stylist for The Lifestyle Channel’s series ‘Home’.
  • Patricia Howard, Yoga teacher and television presenter
  • Peter Howard, conference speaker and food commentator
  • Deborah Hutton, host of top rating Nine Network’s Shows including Location, Location and Fashion Editor at Large for The Australian women’s Weekly
  • Simon Marnie, Host of the Weekend Show on 702 ABC radio
  • Lyndey Milan, Co-host on Nine Network’s show ‘Fresh – Cooking with The Australian Women’s Weekly
  • Tania Nash, educator and workshop presenter
  • Ian Ross, Channel 7 nightly news presenter
  • Adam Spencer co-host of Triple J Breakfast Show. Host of ABC’s Quantum and science panel discussion show FAQ.


Mary Atkins is an award-winning speaker with over 20 years’ experience in training and coaching presenters. A member of the global organisation International Training in Communication (ITC) for 16 years, Mary is an Accredited Communicator. Much in demand as an evaluator and judge, her talents for encouraging speakers to reach their potential is renowned. Mary has also put her advice into practice on numerous occasions, presenting on television, radio and in front of live audiences

Format: Paperback, 240 pages
Published In: Australia, 01 February 2005
Publisher: Lothian Books
Dimensions: 21.0 x 13.0 centimeters