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Best Evaluator at Toastmasters

Published May 11, 2019 by Maryanne

DSCF3648Maryanne Christiano Mistretta – Best Evaluator, Toastmasters International

It’s been a glorious week in my public speaking journey. Sunday I was honored to present a workshop, “Be Your Own Hero” for Toastmasters District 83. And Thursday night I won for “Best Evaluator.”

I’ve only been a member of Toastmasters since October 2018, and in seven short months I’ve scored the workshop, won for “Best Speaker,” “Best Table Topics,” and “Best Evaluator.” All this for my journey to become a motivational speaker!

Being an evaluator scared me. Who am I to judge someone else’s speech, which they worked so hard to present? The thing is, unlike having a prepared speech, when you’re an evaluator, you have to come up with something to say on the spot! (Kind of like being a judge on American Idol!) I was so terrified to do this, I procrastinated for several weeks, even avoiding going to Toastmasters by going to other events on Thursdays instead, like concerts, book clubs, etc.

When I got up there, I was so nervous, but I channeled my nervous energy into positive energy. Luckily I had the pleasure to evaluate a positive speech, called “Follow Your Dreams.” The speaker was amazing and I was so high on what she said, that I was able to nail my evaluation of her. It was hard finding something to give feedback on because she was so good. But I thought about myself, when I read in front of an audience and realized I could give the same feedback I’ve been given. Not to use filler words.

In the past few months I’ve watched so many amazing motivational speakers on You Tube and Ted Talks and in person. Using filler words like “like,” “so,” and even “um,” seems to be the norm; something we can all be aware of.

Hell, I even caught myself saying “um” during my presentation, but I still won! And the person who evaluated my evaluation offered ZERO critique on my evaluation. He said my evaluation was “perfect.” I also received praise from others in my Toastmaster group that it’s rare that someone wins at a “first.” But I nailed it.

The point of all of this is, don’t worry about being perfect, just get out there and do it! Not everyone will notice your imperfections, or that you are nervous. And maybe you’ll be pleasantly surprised by a win — whether it’s your first time doing something, or after many tries!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for motivational speaking engagements and is the author of the following books: 

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

Anti-Bullying Book Club!

Published April 7, 2019 by Maryanne

IMG_20190406_172624_591 (1)Say “yes” to acai bowls and “no” to bullying! (Photo by Sara Liptack)

I was so honored to be a part of an anti-bulling club this weekend!

Sara Liptack of the Little Free Library, Westfield, New Jersey, invited me to her home to discuss my book, “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” with young readers in the Westfield neighborhood.

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is about my experiences growing up in the 1970s and dealing with bullying throughout grade school and high school. The girls had a few weeks to read the book, but they all said they finished it in one or two sittings.

It was refreshing to be in the company of such inspirational young ladies who are all anti-bullying advocates and have dreams for a bright future.

What I’ve learned, unfortunately, is that when it comes to peer pressure and bullying, not much has changed in the last 40 years; especially now with the internet.

The good news is, the four girls I’ve spoken with were confident to be themselves and truly have it together when it comes to standing apart from the crowd, going after their dreams, and not worrying what others think of them.

One commented, “I can’t wait to go to college. I’m going to learn so much!”

I asked the girls what part of the book they liked best. Most agreed they liked the whole book, in general, and that it was a quick read. One young lady said her favorite part was when I started fighting back.

In a comfortable, private setting, everyone, including the adults Sara and myself, shared their experiences with bullying and how they handled it. It was an awesome event and a great learning experience.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for motivational speaking engagements and is the author of the following books: 

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

My Third Book Signing at Randy Now’s Man Cave

Published December 17, 2017 by Maryanne

DSCF1105Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

Today was my third book signing at Randy Now’s Man Cave in Bordentown, New Jersey.

It’s always an honor being here. The store is incredible with vinyl and oddities. So many legends have performed here; and signed books here, that I’m humbled, big time, to be among many greats.

I favor doing book signings, but for those who aren’t in my area, the books are available online.

On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist can be purchased here: https://nextcenturypublishing.com/product/on-the-guest-list/

Love Cats can be purchased here: http://touch.kaspersky.com/kis_cup_f8f731b4-629f-4b7c-923c-495d87bf7e09/1513260348

The Gypsy Smiled can be purchased here: https://www.amazon.com/Gypsy-Smiled-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B074VC7MT9

 

 

Book Signing at Randy Now’s Man Cave

Published December 19, 2016 by Maryanne

SAM_1817With my supportive husband, Dennis Lords

It was my honor to sign copies of my two books, “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” and “Love Cats” at Randy Now’s Man Cave in Bordentown, NJ, yesterday (Sunday, Dec. 19, 2016).

Mary Muehleisen was also there representing her late brother, Maury Muehleisen who played guitar with Jim Croce, and died in a plane crash with Jim at the age of 24. She was selling two of Maury’s solo CDs (which are incredible, by the way! What a gorgeous voice he had, and a beautiful guitarist and songwriter).

Interesting story, a customer came in to buy a Jim Croce record for his girlfriend for Christmas. He did not know that Mary Muehleisen was going to be there. What a beautiful coincidence. The customer brought one of her brother’s CDs.

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Mary Muehleisen and Maryanne Mistretta

It was such an honor to meet Mary Muehleisen, as well as selling quite a few books!

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Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta, Randy Now’s Mommy, and Randy Now! 

Thanks so much to Randy Now for hosting such a wonderful, memorable event!

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My books on sale in Randy Now’s Man Cave!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta works as a professional journalist and public speaker. Her books are available on Amazon.

“On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” https://www.amazon.com/Guest-List-Adventures-Music-Journalist/dp/162903908X

“Love Cats” https://www.amazon.com/Love-Cats-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta/dp/1681020513

For more information on Randy Now’s Man Cave, visit: http://www.mancavenj.com/

For more information on Maury Muehleisen visit: http://www.maurymuehleisen.com/main.html

“On the Guest List” Book Reading/Signing

Published June 16, 2016 by Maryanne

Cover proof 4

Tuesday, June 21, 2016, 7 p.m. I’ll be doing a book reading/signing for my first book “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” at Fairfield Library, 261 Hollywood Ave., Fairfield, NJ.

“On the Guest List” is available on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Guest-List-Adventures-Music-Journalist/dp/162903908X

“On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” is a fun, upbeat memoir about a girl who loves music and life in general. Maryanne paints a vivid picture of being a teenager in the 1970s and young woman in the 1980s — and how the punk, new wave and rock scene was from a young fan’s viewpoint. Life truly comes together for Maryanne once she creates a career for herself reporting on the music she loves, writing for publications such as The Aquarian Arts Weekly, music.com and Punk magazine. Unlike other music memoirs, there is no downward spiral into drugs and addiction. Nor is it a groupie “tell all.” “On the Guest List” is simply a compilation of mostly happy memories straight from the pages of Maryanne’s diaries — and of course, her heart.

Carmine Appice Book Reading/Signing at Barnes & Noble, Springfield, NJ

Published May 7, 2016 by Maryanne

SAM_0028Meeting Carmine Appice

What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than meeting a rock legend and hanging out with other music fans?!

Carmine Appice was at Barnes & Noble, Springfield, New Jersey,  today, promoting his memoir “Stick It!”

Over 50 people were in attendance, listening attentively as Carmine shared great stories about his adventures working with Ted Nugent, Rod Stewart, and Ozzy Osbourne. Carmine is also known for drumming with Vanilla Fudge and Cactus.

I first heard of Carmine from one of Rod Stewart’s records when I was a teenager. Back then, you’d listen to an album and study the album cover, front and back, and learn who all the musicians are. That’s how I learned the name Carmine Appice. Kids today don’t do that; they download music and take it all for granted. This is what I spoke to Carmine about during our brief chat. He was awesome! And afterwards I had a similar chat with his beautiful wife Leslie who was hanging out in the back with other fans. That’s the coolest part about going to any intimate music event — meeting so many people on the same wavelength!

Rod Stewart wrote the foreword to the book, which is endorsed by Max Weinberg, Brian May, Paul Stanley, Marky Ramone, and Ted Nugent.

I can’t wait to start reading it!

Stick_it_book_01

For more information on Carmine Appice, visit: http://www.carmineappice.net/

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of “On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” available on Amazon in paperback only: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X

Happy National Book Lovers Day!

Published August 9, 2015 by Maryanne

Book LoverYes, that was me!

Happy National Book Lovers Day!

If you’re a blogger, it’s probably very likely you’re an avid book reader. In my 30s I used to read one or two books per week!

Some of my favorites are:

  1. “The Christmas Pig” by Kinky Friedman
  2. “The Good Good Pig” by Sy Montgomery
  3. “Paleo Manifesto” by John Durant
  4. “Letters From the Earth” by Mark Twain
  5. “Finding of the Third Eye” by Vera Stanley
  6. “And I Don’t Want to Live This Life” by Deborah Spungeon
  7. “Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret” by Judy Blume

What are you favorites?

Of course I wrote a few too!

“On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist” (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/162903908X)

“Love Cats” (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YBGVJQS/)