Public Speaker

I am an experienced public speaker, and available to give lectures on several topics. My most frequent subjects are the Presidents and Presidency of the United States, and writing/publishing.

As of December 2020, I’ve appeared on panels at more than 175 science fiction conventions, averaging 3-15 panels per convention. Panel topics I frequently speak about including speculative fiction writing, editing and publishing, literature, science, business, and more. I’ve also given nearly 100 solo presentations to a variety of groups (including Mensa conventions, space conferences, astronomy clubs, and more); titles and details are below. I was a guest lecturer at the University of Connecticut, talking about book design and about science fiction writing.

Below is a list of my most recent solo appearances, along with any currently scheduled talks:

July 9, 2022: “Punctilious Punctuation: Telling tales with (and of) those jots and tittles, including why they’re called jots and tittles, and the horrifying story of why the period goes inside the quotation Marks” at American Mensa’s Annual Gathering in Sparks, NV

February 16, 2022: “Introduction to Poker” as American Mensa’s Northeast Region’s monthly speaker (electronically via Zoom)

January 8, 2022: “A Century of Asimov” as Eastern Oklahoma Mensa’s monthly speaker (electronically via Zoom)

October 23, 2021: “Punctilious Punctuation” at Boston Mensa’s Wicked Good Regional Gathering in Fitchburg, MA

April 24, 2021: “Inaugurations and Installations: Presidents’ First Days on the Job” as Oregon Mensa’s monthly speaker (electronically via Zoom)

March 10, 2021: “Inaugurations and Installations: Presidents’ First Days on the Job” as New Hampshire Mensa’s monthly speaker (electronically via Zoom)

January 16, 2021: “Inaugurations and Installations: Presidents’ First Days on the Job” as Kentuckiana Mensa’s monthly speaker (electronically via Zoom)

November 28, 2020: “John Kennedy’s grandma, Bill Clinton’s mother, and John Tyler’s grandchildren: Familial oddities of the Presidents of the United States” for North Texas Mensa’s regional gathering (electronically via Zoom)

September 6, 2020: “John Kennedy’s grandma, Bill Clinton’s mother, and John Tyler’s grandchildren: Familial oddities of the Presidents of the United States” for Central Texas Mensa’s LonestaRG regional gathering (electronically via Zoom)

June 3, 2020: “John Kennedy’s grandma, Bill Clinton’s mother, and John Tyler’s grandchildren: Familial oddities of the Presidents of the United States” for the Learning in Retirement Association of the University of Massachusetts at Lowell (electronically via Zoom)

March 7, 2020: “A Century of Asimov” at Central New Jersey Mensa’s Snowball regional gathering in Iselin, NJ

February 15, 2020: “A Centennial of Asimov” at New Hampshire Mensa’s “RG at the End of the Universe” regional gathering in Portsmouth, NH

January 23, 2020: “A Centennial of Asimov” as Greater New York Mensa’s monthly speaker, in New York, NY

December 12, 2019: Guest appearance on WBAI’s “Hour of the Wolf” speculative fiction radio program, with Randee Dawn, talking about Across the Universe, in New York, NY

November 2, 2019: “Publishing and Getting Paid in the Era of DIY and Kickstarter” at Chicago Area Mensa’s HalloweeM Regional Gathering in Chicago, IL

November 1, 2019: “A Centennial of Asimov” at Chicago Area Mensa’s HalloweeM Regional Gathering in Chicago, IL

October 26, 2019: “Publishing and Getting Paid in the Era of DIY and Kickstarter” at Boston Mensa’s Wicked Good Regional Gathering in Fitchburg, MA

August 17, 2019: “Publishing and Getting Paid in the Era of DIY and Kickstarter” at Metropolitan Washington Mensa’s Pandemic Regional Gathering in Herndon, VA

July 5, 2019: “A Celebration of Isaac Asimov’s Centennial” (joint appearance with Richard Lederer) at American Mensa’s Annual Gathering in Phoenix, AZ

October 27, 2018: “The Democratization of Publishing” at Boston Mensa’s Wicked Good Regional Gathering in Fitchburg, MA

September 1, 2018: “Turning your manuscript into a book: traditional, small press, or self  publishing?” at Mensa of Northeast New York’s RechaRGe Regional Gathering in Albany, NY

July 7, 2018: “John Kennedy’s grandma, Bill Clinton’s mother, and John Tyler’s grandchildren: Familial oddities of the Presidents of the United States” at the American Mensa Annual Gathering in Indianapolis, IN

February 9, 2018: monthly speaker for the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society in Philadelphia, PA

January 20, 2018: “Turning your manuscript into a book: traditional, small press, or self  publishing?” at the Pocono Writers’ Conference in Stroudsburg, PA

September 3, 2017: “CSA wins; Nixon defeats Kennedy; Leonov first man on Moon: rewriting the world with alternate history” at Mensa of Northeast New York’s RechaRGe Regional Gathering in Albany, NY

August 19, 2017: “CSA wins; Nixon defeats Kennedy; Leonov first man on Moon: rewriting the world with alternate history” at Metropolitan Washington Mensa’s Pandemic Regional Gathering in Herndon, VA

July 8, 2017: “How I Came to Write ‘Shall Not Perish from the Earth'” at the American Mensa Annual Gathering in Hollywood, FL

July 6, 2017: “Any President But Donald Trump” at the American Mensa Annual Gathering in Hollywood, FL

March 4, 2017: “Any President But Donald Trump” at Central New Jersey Mensa’s Snowball Regional Gathering in Iselin, NJ

October 29, 2016: “Donald Trump & Hillary Clinton: Calling Them Exceptional is Understatement” at Boston Mensa’s Wicked Good Regional Gathering in Fitchburg, MA

September 4, 2016: “Donald Trump & Hillary Clinton: Calling Them Exceptional is Understatement” at Mensa of Northeast New York’s RechaRGe Regional Gathering in Albany, NY

July 3, 2016: “Hail to the Chiefs! (and Their Vice Presidents, and First Ladies…)” at the American Mensa Annual Gathering in San Diego, CA

March 7, 2015: “Science Fiction’s Scary Predictive Powers, or, Where’s My Flying Car?” at Central New Jersey Mensa’s “Snowball” regional gathering in Iselin, NJ

July 3, 2014: I facilitated a panel discussion on science fiction at the American Mensa Annual Gathering in Boston, MA (panelists: Walter H. Hunt, Shariann Lewitt, and Allen Steele)

April 5, 2014: Monthly speaker for the Garden State Speculative Fiction writers

March 29, 2014: “So You Want to Get Rich as a Writer?” at The Twisted World convention in King of Prussia, PA

March 1, 2014: “So You Want to Get Rich as a Writer?” at Central New Jersey Mensa’s “Snowball” regional gathering in Iselin, NJ

July 4, 2009: “A Random Verbal Walk Through the Presidency” at the American Mensa Annual Gathering in Pittsburgh, PA

July 3, 2009: “Stupid Author Tricks” at the American Mensa Annual Gathering in Pittsburgh, PA

March 7, 2009: “A Random Verbal Walk Through the Presidency” as the keynote speaker at Central New Jersey Mensa’s “Snowball” regional gathering in Iselin, NJ

February 14, 2009: “A Random Verbal Walk Through the Presidency” at New Hampshire Mensa’s “Love Potion ’09” regional gathering in Nashua, NH

February 14, 2009: “Stupid Author Tricks” at New Hampshire Mensa’s “Love Potion ‘09” regional gathering in Nashua, NH

December 10, 2008: Book discussion and Presidential talk at the Ohio State University Barnes & Noble Bookstore, Columbus, OH.

December 9, 2008: Book discussion and Presidential talk at Books & Company on the Greene, Dayton (Beavercreek), OH.

December 6, 2008: “Stupid Author Tricks” at Cincinnati Mensa’s “Winter Wonderland” Regional Gathering in Cincinnati, OH.

December 6, 2008: “A Random Verbal Walk Through the Presidency” at Cincinnati Mensa’s “Winter Wonderland” Regional Gathering in Cincinnati, OH.

September 14, 2008: “A Random Verbal Walk Through the Presidency” at the Brooklyn Book Festival, Brooklyn, NY

Titles of older talks I’ve given include:

  • “Is Science Fiction an Oxymoron? or; Science Fiction, Science and Fiction: Can you have one with the other?”
  • “The Artemis Project”
  • “Stupid Author Tricks”
  • “How to Write/Publish Science Fiction”
  • “The Science in Star Trek”

Other organizations I’ve spoken for:

  • The International Space Development Conference
  • The Mid Hudson Astronomy Association
  • The New York Wings Club
  • The Greater New York 99s
  • The Prydonians of Princeton
  • American Mensa’s Annual Gathering, and Regional Gatherings for several local Mensa groups, including: Boston; Central New Jersey; Connecticut & Western Massachusetts; Delaware Valley; Greater New York; Mid Hudson; and New Hampshire.