garden lectures garden pests gardening insects speaking

Talking and writing about talking and writing

Let’s see if I can write two articles at once, multi-task, one here, the other in MS Word (a gardening piece for my weekly newsprint column). Should they both be about gardening so as to make it a bit easier on me? Kind of, I think I’ll write about talking about gardening here; the topic is already set for the other one – starting a new garden.

Over the past several years I’ve given a few lectures, or talks, about garden insects and about gardening in general, the former as The Write Gardener, the latter as a Penn State Certified Master Gardener. On the bug talks, I can ask for a fee, but that’s prohibited when I speak as a Master Gardener. However, MGs are allowed to accept compensation if, and only if, it is offered. I enjoy giving my bug presentations, especially when there’s lots of questions, even questions that I can’t answer (I’m not a know-it-all by any means).

I’ve been using a Power Point presentation with lots of pictures, but only if the facility has access to a projector. Otherwise I use handouts, which is fine, but it seems I have to “work” a little harder to hold my audience’s attention.

I consider myself a rookie speaker, and as such, my fee is embarrassingly low (I’m sure the big name garden lecturers charge hundreds, if not thousands). I should charge more, but with the economy the way it is, and this being a relatively depressed area with a high unemployment rate, I don’t want to overcharge. My wife seems to think I charge a reasonable fee, for now. With time and maybe a published book, I think I could get away with charging a little more.

Here’s one of the photographs I’m using in my presentation. I think it’s a fun picture, don’t you?

The Good, The Bad, and The Bugly

(I didn’t finish the two articles at the same time, but I was close.)


By TC Conner

Pro hobbyist photographer, drone enthusiast, musician, husband and father.

10 replies on “Talking and writing about talking and writing”

Hello Mr. T C Connor,
I loved your article for the weekly newsprint column. Yes start slow, I have to keep telling myself that Rome wasn’t built in a day and it’s not worth trying to overdo ourselves.
Love the picture of the praying mantis, at least that’s what I’m assuming he is!
Oh there’s a new fingernail polish out in “Mango” it’s a very nice spring color 😉

Heck, I give kudos to anyone who can give talks! Experts constantly tell writers to get out and give talks to draw attention to their books. Can’t do it. Yes, I’ve tried small scale.

Remember that even if your fee is low, you’re building an audience for your book when you have one.

Do you ever write out loud–talk and write at the same time? It sure does slow down the WPM. I wish I could afford voice recognition software and that it could be installed in some type of portable unit so I could talk, garden, and write all at the same time! Who knows, maybe it is already? I’m not tech savvy enough to be aware of it. Is the IPad equipped for that yet? Is Mr. Eastwood going to demand a percentage of your speaking fee for using his image? I was wondering, by the way, what color is appropriate for toenails at this time of year? Do you think the color of that verbena in my pic would be a good choice?

The picture sure got my attention. Don’t know how much you charge but even a small stipend is nice. Though oftentimes just doing the talk is a reward in itself. You get to meet and talk to other gardeners!

I really enjoy the talks, and yes that is a form of payment. But it won’t get the bills paid. ;~)

And as a Master Gardener, small stipends are allowed but only if they’re offered by whomever asks for a speaker.

I’m not sure what you mean by “successful publisher” Ms. Elizabeth. (Unless you’re referring to our ongoing discussions about “TMJ,” if so, no one here would know what you’re talking about so you’ll have to explain it in another comment.)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.