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An Essential Guide to Public Speaking, 2nd Edition

Serving Your Audience with Faith, Skill, and Virtue

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Communication expert and popular speaker Quentin Schultze offers a practical, accessible, and inspiring guide to public speaking, showing readers how to serve their audiences with faith, skill, and virtue. This thoroughly rewritten and expanded four-color edition has been tested and revised with input from Christian undergraduates and contains new chapters on timely topics, such as speaking for video, conducting group presentations, and engaging society civilly. A complete public speaking textbook for Christian universities, it includes helpful sidebars, tips, and appendixes. Additional resources for students and professors are available through Textbook eSources.

Foreword by Martin J. Medhurst
1. Speak to Serve
2. Plan Neighbor-Serving Speeches
3. Conquer Speaking Fears
4. Compose an Outline
5. Speak Extemporaneously
6. Anticipate Challenges and Opportunities
7. Think Biblically
8. Research the Topic and Audience
9. Find and Evaluate Online Sources
10. Be Trustworthy (Ethos 1)
11. Be Virtuous (Ethos 2)
12. Convey Ideas Passionately
13. Speak to Inform Dramatically
14. Tell Stories (Mythos)
15. Speak to Persuade Logically (Logos)
16. Speak to Persuade Emotionally (Pathos)
17. Share Special Moments
18. Advocate for All Neighbors by Amy King
19. Present in Groups by Heidi Petak
20. Stage with Technology
21. Speak through Video by Kathleen Sindorf
Afterword by Clifford G. Christians
Appendix A: Checklist for Preparing a Speech
Appendix B: Plan Speeches with the Holy Spirit
Appendix C: Form for Evaluating Speeches
Appendix D: Speak from a Manuscript: Lessons from an Executive Speechwriter by Karl Payton


"An Essential Guide to Public Speaking is in a class of its own. It gets to the heart of the subject quickly, emphasizing skills and virtues for serving neighbors, coworkers, and the world. Schultze frames the ability to speak as a gift, giving readers the rich purpose and motivation to speak with wisdom, clarity, and delight. This book is a gem."

Stephanie Bennett, professor of communication and media ecology and Fellow for Student Engagement, Palm Beach Atlantic University

"Borrowing from Augustine, Quentin eloquently reminds us that neighbor love entails speaking for others. He draws together all the key parts of public speaking--researching, outlining, cultivating ethos, using stories, being compassionate--in a fresh and distinctly Christian way. What a gift to Christian communicators!"

Tim Muehlhoff, professor of communication, Biola University; author of Winsome Persuasion: Christian Influence in a Post-Christian World

"Quentin Schultze's Essential Guide to Public Speaking is a 'God-send' for instructors teaching at Christian colleges and universities. Rather than treating public speaking as performance, he urges readers to follow Jesus's commandment to love their neighbors as themselves--to serve their audience. In a wonderful integration of faith and learning, he describes how they can do this in different speaking situations. Unlike most public speaking texts, this book isn't boring and doesn't merely restate the obvious. Students will appreciate the warm, inviting voice of the author and the multiple contemporary examples he uses to illustrate his advice. They will also quickly realize that the guidance Schultze offers will help them to be more successful in class and with outside audiences. Instructors will appreciate the way Dr. Schultze uses rhetorical theory to undergird the guidance he gives and his emphasis on ethical considerations and speaker integrity. They may also find the organizational structure of the text a model for how they want to structure the progression of assignments in their syllabus. I cannot imagine that a communication department at a Christian school would not eagerly adopt this book. It's an ideal fit. I have great admiration for what Dr. Schultze has created."

Em Griffin, professor emeritus of communication, Wheaton College

"I loved the first edition. This stunning new edition surpasses everything else available. It is perfect for educators, students, career coaches, business leaders, pastors, and beyond. It includes everything for writing and delivering speeches that truly serve audiences, with a solid and even inspiring Christian perspective."

Daniel D. Fultz, dean, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Charleston Southern University

"Quentin Schultze has done it again! By expanding his classic work An Essential Guide to Public Speaking, he offers a fresh and practical handbook for creating compelling public presentations from a Christian perspective. Written directly to students, as his 'audience neighbors,' this text imparts rich Augustinian and ancient rhetorical scholarship while providing practical advice on overcoming anxiety. With accessible language, helpful sidebars, and wonderful discussion questions, this book is even better than the first edition."

Elizabeth W. McLaughlin, professor of communication, Bethel University, Indiana

"I love this book. It fills a real need by addressing both the basic skills for and the faith-focused call to servant speaking. It's a gift to receive so much expertise and wisdom in one book. Brilliant."

Dorie Shelby, professor and chair, Department of Communication and Media, Spring Arbor University

"A public speaking book unlike any other: a joy to read, personal, engaging, interesting, faith-directed, and practical. Schultze's experiences and stories often make this book read more like a novel than a textbook. It is the kind of book you will want to keep and use repeatedly--and give to friends who are afraid of speaking or who have never really learned how to speak well."

Martin Medhurst, distinguished professor of rhetoric and communication and professor of political science, Baylor University

"Rarely are instructional books relevant and excellent. This is one such innovative rarity, with impeccable pedagogy and masterful writing."

Clifford Christians, professor of communication emeritus, University of Illinois-Urbana

"This is the most interesting, thorough, and useful speaking text I have ever encountered! It is my dream. I can't wait to use it. It includes exactly what I need to teach others. Quentin Schultze beautifully integrates Christian principles and practices with comprehensive material on ethical and effective speaking. Everything I have wanted in a text for students in my public speaking courses is in this book."

Mary Albert Darling, associate professor of communication, Spring Arbor University

"Since our human communication reflects God's communication to us, we should not hesitate to invite God's wisdom into our efforts. Quentin Schultze's Essential Guide to Public Speaking does just that, lending biblical insight and Christian sensitivity to the sphere of public speaking."

Paul A. Soukup, SJ, professor of communication, Santa Clara University

"Master teacher Quentin Schultze's timely text on public speaking is more than a guidebook on learning how to communicate effectively in diverse settings. It is truly an essential guide for articulating one's faith with confidence and joy and living out one's life with humility and virtue. Readers will discover how loving one's audience may even chase out the fear of public speaking."

Terry Lindvall, C. S. Lewis Chair of Communication and Christian Thought, Virginia Wesleyan College

"The speech-making process no longer has to be a nail-biter, full of stress and anxiety. Quentin Schultze has created a Christ-oriented speaking guide that functions as a lifeline for those involved in the art and practice of public speaking. This wonderful book is theoretically grounded, organized for easy reference, and written in an engaging way that informs, inspires, and entertains. Speakers, both novice and advanced, will find helpful explanations and useful tips throughout the book's pages. Anyone seriously applying this information to their own speaking behaviors will see their skills grow."

Don Simmons, professor of communication, Asbury University

"Dr. Schultze's subtitle captures the heart and soul of this wonderful book: serving audiences with faith, skill, and virtue. I have witnessed Dr. Schultze himself using the principles in his book. What a joy to learn from a true servant speaker. He has poured himself into this book to enable us to embody these qualities. I can't wait to see our campuses filled with servant speakers!"

Patricia R. Harris, president, Kuyper College

"Pithy, principled, and practical, Quentin Schultze's second edition of An Essential Guide to Public Speaking serves as a thorough handbook for preparing and delivering speeches in the interest of faithful communication. You can tell that Quin has been there--in loving his audience, planning his talks, and serving with integrity and grace. Appropriate for professors, pastors, students, and people in the pew who hope to gain wisdom and credibility for speaking well."

Bill Strom, professor and chair of media + communication, Trinity Western University

"This commendable book integrates rhetoric, faith, and speaking skills. By far the best text for teaching public speaking at Christian universities."

John Pauley, professor of communication studies, vice provost for academic operations, and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Eastern University

"An Essential Guide to Public Speaking is the necessary alternative to secular public speaking texts--compellingly replete with biblical insights and lessons from church history. Schultze powerfully serves his reading audience by building around the central premise, employed from the Savior, that the greatest speech performer will be the servant of all, including opponents and even the seemingly disinterested. Characteristics of effective service are centrally tied to the nine fruits of the Spirit, which is offered as a chief preparatory filter for 'servant speaking.' This is truly a biblically informed offering. I've loved what I've learned!"

Paul D. Patton, professor of communication, media, and theater, Spring Arbor University

"An Essential Guide to Public Speaking integrates the importance of Christian faith and civic virtue. Dr. Schultze encourages readers to become servant communicators who love God and, therefore, bring their own voices into harmony with God's to love and serve others. With topics like 'prophetic voice' and 'advocating for others,' he goes beyond other public speaking primers and helps Christians develop their own virtuous voices. This is the perfect text for public speaking courses at Christian universities."

Brandon Knight, assistant professor of speech communication, William Carey University

"Dr. Schultze's new edition is even better than the excellent one I used for years. It is interesting, engaging, and even inspiring--all in a textbook that seamlessly integrates faith and skill. I yearn to get back in the classroom with this terrific book."

Lew VanderMeer, senior pastor, New Community Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan

The Author

  1. Quentin J. Schultze
    © Corriveau Photography

    Quentin J. Schultze

    Quentin J. Schultze (PhD, University of Illinois) is a speaker, mentor, consultant, and professor of communication emeritus at Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. His many books include Communicate like a True Leader, An Essential Guide...

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