Whether you write poetry, fiction or nonfiction, reading your work out loud is so important. You might feel satisfied with the words on paper or computer screen, but when you speak those same words, they suddenly become clumsy, without rhythm, fall flat. Even as you work through your drafts, practice reading out loud. Or if you have a trusted friend have them read it to you. The beauty of your language and story will come through, just as the places where something is not working.
A recent blogspot by Susan Vittiow Mark at Writing Wyoming’s offers up some tips when reading your work in a more public venue. Seems like wise things to remember. Might save your audience from fidgeting. Shut up and play your guitar. Zappa couldn’t have said it any better.