Dan Roam, Show and Tell

Dan Roam, Four StorylinesThe Book

Dan Roam, Show and Tell: How Everybody can make Extraordinary Presentations, Penguin, London, 2014

Why I Bought This Book

Dan Roam - Show and TellLately, I haven’t been buying as many books as I used to. The main reason is that I’m now working in the local libraries several times a week, Now, I’m pleased to say I can usually find something interesting to read there. I currently have a list of 75 library books that I want to borrow and read! Even for me, reading one book per week, I can’t read all the ones I want.

‘Must Read’ and ‘Must Have’

When I stalk books in libraries or bookstores I’m looking for two things: to read or buy.

For me, there’s a big difference between ‘must read’ and ‘must have’. ‘Must read’ means it contains ideas and information that I want to learn from.

And, to cross over into my ‘must have’ list the book either needs to be a resource I’ll turn back to often (like a dictionary) or it needs to be an inspiration in its message and design.

[Tweet “Your next presentation made easy – @dan_roam book Show and Tell #presentationdesign”]

A Visual Delight

Dan Roam’s book Show and Tell fits the latter category. It’s a visual delight that is a great example of how I want my books to look.

When you pick up this book you’ll instantly see it’s filled with images and diagrams with usually no more than 100 words on a typical page. In other words, it’s not your usual business book filled with words and more words.

[Tweet “A visual delight – lessons for book writers – @dan_roam book Show and Tell #bookdesign”]

A Visual Metaphor

Even better than being a mere picture book, this one has been very cleverly designed. It’s based on the visual metaphor and diagrams of various presentation types.

The three main tools are:

  1. The Pyramid of heart, head and data
  2. The Puma Outline of head, spine, legs and tail
  3. The Pie to help you with your pictures.

Walk Me Through It

True to name, Dan Roam takes on a journey. And delightfully he shares four storylines that form that basis for the major types of stories most of us are likely to deliver:

  1. The Report
  2. The Explanation
  3. The Pitch
  4. The Drama

And, Roam takes us step by step through creating each one of them. This book looks good, is fun to read and super practical.

Who Should Read This

Book writers and designers will love this book because of its visual design. Speakers and trainers will love it because it provides a compelling structure for designing your next presentation in a simple, easy to understand and powerfully effective way.


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