Books for Speakers

Don’t Freak Out – Speak Out

Public Speaking With Confidence

Follows Ruth’s highly acclaimed book Taking Centre-Stage. Her new book is an invaluable guide for all people who have to get up in front of an audience and speak. It covers all aspects of preparation – mental, emotional, physical and presentation.


1. You are not alone
How top performers conquer nerves

2. Taming the tremors
How to channel the adrenaline rush into positive energy

3. Brain, breath, body
Harnessing your physical powerhouse

4. Your voice is your instrument
Enhance the natural voice to project with ease

5. As others see you
Positive body language and presentation skills

6. Preparing your speech
How to polish your words for impact

7. Countdown to performance
A checklist to ensure you’ll be right on the night

8. You’re on
Take centre stage and enjoy your time in the spotlight


Available in:

  • Paperback – 72 pages, Words & Music Press, (2001, 2002) ISBN: 978-0-9578861-0-0
  • eBook – The complete text of this popular book sent as an email attachment
  • CD-ROM – The complete text of this popular book in audio format
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DON’T FREAK OUT, SPEAK OUT Public speaking with confidence
By Ruth Bonetti

Published by Words and Music ISBN 0 9578861 0 1

In a 30-year career as a professional musician, speaker and teacher, Ruth Bonetti is well placed to write this book and offer the fruits of her experience in the public arena.

Ruth is the author of a number of very helpful books, such as Taking Centre Stage, and Confident Music Performance.

In these she addresses the issues of nerves and offers practical, holistic solutions for the symptoms that can unsettle even the most accomplished performer.

Her main message throughout is that we are far from alone in these experiences. Don’t Freak Out, Speak Out is essentially a book that helps us to help ourselves through a wide variety of challenges and situations.

The fears and worries that plague the novice can be overturned, once it is understood that the panic that threatens to overwhelm us is in fact, raw energy. This handy little 65 page book does not promise that you will never feel nervous again. It does however teach you how to recognize the symptoms of anxiety and face them positively. Learn how to channel the adrenaline rush and turn it to maximum use – as a source of power to lift your presentation to an exciting and enriching performance. You can!

The first Chapter deals with how famous performers (from Winston Churchill to Nicole Kidman) have dealt with nerves. It seems that the most highly creative, thoughtful performers suffer more than their more mundane counterparts.

Far from being a disorder, nerves are a natural response to a pressured situation. Fears can be surmounted and experience breeds confidence.

In succeeding chapters Ruth addresses the power of positive body language, how to enhance the natural voice to project with ease, how to prepare a speech for maximum impact, and most importantly of all, how to really enjoy taking centre stage.

Envisage yourself succeeding and strive for excellence rather than perfection. Even if this book does not chase all of the fear-gremlins away, it will empower you to be poised and confident in any situation.

With amusing and apt illustrations by John Harrison, Ruth’s book exudes an endearing wit, empathy and above all, pragmatic advice on how to really succeed. Creating communication confidence is undoubtedly Ruth’s hallmark.

Reviewed by Mary Nemet, Queensland


The teacher said “Now I want someone to come out to the front and address the class about…” Do you remember freezing and praying “Don’t pick me…don’t pick me”. Funny how that fear of public speaking has been with us for so long!
“Fear no more,” I say. For Ruth Bonetti has written another book to help overcome those butterflies, fears and knots in your stomach.
The symptoms of stage fright are similar whatever the platform or audience. Ruth Bonetti learned to conquer them in her long international career as a professional musician. She has applied her wealth of presentation experience to her speaking and writing.
I commend Don’t Freak Out – Speak Out to both amateur and professional speakers. It’s a great book.
— Max Hitchins
World President and Chair, World Federation of Professional Speakers, 2000 -2001
President, National Speakers Association of Australia 1995-1996


Ruth Bonetti is encouraging people to speak out in her book Don?t Freak Out ? Speak Out. In it, Ms Bonetti provides useful information to help those who are not as confident as they would like when it comes to public speaking.

Don’t Freak Out – Speak Out has already climbed to number one on the Mary Ryan’s Bookshop list which is published in the Sunday Mail.
— Focus, September 2001

Don’t Freak Out – Speak Out is a very useful tool for speakers at all stages of their career. The practical exercises Ruth uses have assisted me greatly in both my consulting and public speaking roles. Don’t Freak Out – Speak Out is a must for all public speakers.
— Kelvin Hutchinson, director, Vision in Action