Speak Up! Page to Stage with Charlene Jones

Don’t Be Afraid!

The end of January had Charlene Jones leading a group of unsuspecting WCYR members in one of the most interactive workshops I have ever attended. We began by warming up our voices, because we would all be speaking this evening. We recited poems in a circle, practicing tone and volume. We read from our own writing at a microphone and learned how to use a microphone to create effect.

It was a lesson in “owning the stage”. Charlene instructed us in how to change emphasis, volume, pitch and tone. Charlene also taught us some other tricks about how to own the stage. You want the audience to sense your confidence. She reminded us, “You never know what’s going to happen until you get there.”

Remember to Breathe!

Charlene emphasized it’s important to practice, practice, practice. Practice by reciting whatever you like, even simple nursery rhymes. Charlene suggested reciting something for at least three minutes, as this would mimic being at a reading. Also, practice in front of people whenever you can. There are many places to read in Toronto, but there are also several opportunities in our area as well. Check out Newmarket coffee houses Cardinal Press and a Hui Hou, which host open reading events regularly; Word Up happens every second Thursday of the month at the Unity Market & Café in Barrie; and Hummingbird Hub in Stouffville has an author open mic on the first Monday of the month. No excuses! Get out there and conquer the stage!

We’d like to thank one of our Bookshelf sponsors, Lauft at the Upper Canada Mall, for donating the space.

Upcoming Events:

Fact or Fiction? Q&A with the York Regional Police – Sunday, February 17 at Newmarket Community Centre and Lions Hall

Creating Compelling Characters with Ibi Kaslik – Sunday, March 10, 1:00pm to 4:00pm at Ray Twinney, Lounge 1

Playing the Short Game #2: You Sold a Story!: Contracts, Editing, & Reality with Douglas Smith – Thursday, March 28, 7:00pm to 9:00pm at Lauft in the Upper Canada Mall in Newmarket

WCYR Annual General Meeting + Self-publishing 101 – Sunday, April 7, 1:00pm to 4:00pm, Location TBA

Optimizing Personal Appearances with Gary McGugan – Wednesday, April 17, 7:00pm to 9:00pm at Chapters Newmarket, 17440 Yonge Street, Newmarket

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When Loni isn't reading other people's words or running around after her two young children, she spends time writing stories of her own. She finds inspiration in the little things, but also in momentous events. Loni currently resides in York Region. Twitter: @LoniStorm Instagram: loni_storm Pinterest: lonistorm

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