Gail Lee Martin spoke to a variety of audiences from school children, to seniors, to other writers. She prepared her talk well in advance and rehearsed it. She selected her outfit for the occasion and went to the hairdresser as the event approached.
She prepared handouts and visuals to use. Below, you’ll see her giving one of these talks. I note how composed she looks and I wonder why I didn’t inherit that sangfroid. When I give a talk, I’m a nervous wreck. Preparing for a presentation makes me quite anxious.
Looking at these photos, I’m trying to figure out the occasion. It’s not her Margaret Hill McCarter impersonation, as she wore a costume for that. It’s not her author talk, as her books are not on display.
It might be some sort of presentation at a historical museum, possibly in Eureka. That’s the Greenwood County history that she’s holding up. She wrote some of the essays for it on the Martin and the McGhee families. The framed photo on the table shows Prairie Belle school which her husband, Clyde Martin, attended as a child.
Other talks that she gave included the Rosemary Hour at the Kansas Authors Club annual convention. It honored Kansas authors who had passed away in the last year. She was the archivist for KAC for over 10 years.
Gail also gave talks about the history of aprons which was a popular presentation at senior centers and nursing homes. For a number of years, she led classes in memory writing at the Shepherd Center in Wichita.
I wish I had video recordings of some of these talks.