I’ve mentioned before that I joined Toastmasters so that I could someday do a panel or a reading without dissolving into a quivering pile of nerves. It worked!
Gary had a reading slot at the local con over Thanksgiving, which he kindly shared with the rest of us. I had a story I’d shortened to read to my Toastmasters club a few months ago that was about the right length, so it was just a matter of practicing it and reading it to my husband and trying not to think about it.
The reading went well. I had to pause a couple times to wait for the audience to stop laughing, but I’m pretty sure they were laughing at the story, not at me. (Reading tip: Choose something funny, because otherwise people don’t react at all and it feels like they’re bored.) It was almost kind of a little bit fun at points. Tanya Huff was the guest of honor, and she came up afterwards and said nice things.
And it didn’t kill me! Really, what more can I ask for?