Book Review: Make It Clear by Patrick Henry Winston
Originally posted on 08 Nov 2022
- Title: Make It Clear: Speak and Write to Persuade and Inform
- Author: Patrick Henry Winston
- ISBN: 9780262539388
The author is a professor of Artificial Intelligence at MIT who also presents a yearly seminar on the subject of public speaking. This book is a result of that seminar.
While I’ve lots of knowledge and experience in this area, you never know where you’re going to find new tips and ideas. Maybe Doc Winston would have some for me.
He did not.
The book is fine, but despite its claims to the contrary it’s very much for an academic audience. Many of the recommendations would not fly in my area of public speaking but would work well enough for an academic course or conference (I must assume).
Those recommendations typically are presented as rules, which in my experience they very much are not. This was quite irritating. If he’d presented them as concepts plus a “and this is how I do it” then I’d not have minded.
If I had no experience either doing or training people in public speaking then I may have found this book useful. With my background, it ended up not being a good investment in money or time.
Ah, well. It was worth a shot.