The following dramatization may or may not fully represent the cycle some (*cough*) speakers go through before, during and after an event.
Oh wow--this sounds like such a fantastic event! Love the concept. Love the audience. Topic is right in my sweet spot. So honored to be invited. I can't wait.
Bio & headshot? I hate writing bios. Can I send what I've been using for the past decade? Yes, a lot has changed but did I mention how much I hate writing my own bio? Can I successfully extract a decent headshot from this family photo?
Description of my talk? It seems so incredibly far away. (Brainstorm cool title, scratch, rewrite, repeat until the very last moment it needs to be submitted. Scribble description that's compelling, yet vague enough to change the content direction at least 9 million times)
Holy smokes! It's when?!?? What did the description I sent say again? WHAT IS THAT SUPPOSED TO MEAN?? I'm such an idiot.
Cancel all extracurricular activities. Hole up in office. Stare at blank sheets of paper. Re-read Presentation Zen, Confessions of a Public Speaker and an unhealthy amount of blogs on successful presentations. Why did I sign up for this again? I hate speaking. (Write blog post about the insanity of preparing to speak)
**And then a miracle occurs** (Light bulbs go off. Heavenly choirs can be heard) This is going to be so cool. I can't believe I get to do this as my job. I love speaking. The audience is going to love this. I'm so excited. (Much enthusiasm now around building slides)
(Day before event) This sounds so stupid. They're going to hate me. I'm tired of hearing the sound of my own voice. Why did I think this is cool? I hope no one shows up.. and all recording devices break so there's no evidence of my ineptness. I wonder how bad it'd be if I left the country for a few days.
(15 mins before event) I don't believe I should drink anymore Red Bull. Or eat anymore candy, lest I go into a sugar-induced coma. Or talk at a billion mph. What if no one comes? What is the sound of one hand clapping? What if that one hand doesn't even clap? Why isn't Keynote working right???
(Immediately post-talk) That sucked. I suck. I can't believe people were interested in that. I'm such a poser. The people who followed up were probably just being nice. I should go poke my own eyes out now.
(After talk) Wow--I can't believe all the great feedback I keep hearing. Maybe it went better than I thought? It sounds like it really helped a lot of people. They want me to come back? Really? Wow. That is so cool. I love my job.
**Any others we should add?**