Free chapters from Confessions

My book Confessions of a Public Speaker used to have two free chapters on the page as a special promotion, but Amazon took them down recently.

Here they are:

Chapter 2 – Attack of the Butterflies & Chapter 3  (PDF)


3 Responses to “Free chapters from Confessions”

  1. Sean Stapleton


    Enjoy the blog much; your first two books as well. Confessions is still on the reading list.

    I started to skim Chapter 3 from the link above, and I couldn’t get past the first sentence:

    “It’s 7:47 a.m. at Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco, so early the sun is just starting to rise.”

    The sentence so effectively disabled my suspension of disbelief (or my ability to “sink in” to the writing) that I think it must be a (rather persistent) typo.

    1) 7:47 (almost 8!) doesn’t seem particularly early, and I am NOT a morning person. Well, certainly I wasn’t before the kids!
    2) 7:47 is clearly not so early that “no one except the doorman, the cab driver, and me (would be) awake and outside.”
    3) 7:47 is surely long past sunrise!

    In fact, a quick google suggests that only on fewer than two dozen days in the past 4 years has sunrise in SF occurred so late as 7:30, and not once past 7:37. It is scheduled to happen at 7:40 AM on Nov 6 this year.

    Surely, the sentence was meant to begin with something more plausible, like 5:47?

    1. Scott Berkun

      I totally understand and if it took you out, sorry about that. But it’s such a personal and fragile thing this whole suspension of disbelief thing, and sometimes fiction does a better job of suspending disbelief than the truth does.

      Here are the verifiable facts:

      • It was 7:47am.
      • There was no one on the streets in Fisherman’s wharf that morning. Why? I don’t know. I’m not there often. It was kind of cold, and tourists, who mostly populate the wharf area, don’t have to go to work. But maybe it’s always like that. I don’t know.
      • It would have been more accurate to say “so early the sun is still rising in the sky”. I didn’t mean to refer to the singular moment the sun appeared, in the same way, if I’d mentioned I watched a sunset, I wouldn’t be referring only to the singular moment the sun fell below the horizon.
      • True sunrise gets as late as 7:25 in the winter (see table). 20 minutes after sunrise, as far as my night owl eyes are concerned, still counts as sunrise :)
  2. Sean Stapleton

    You are a gentlemen, sir. Very civilized response to a nit-picky/low content comment.


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