Mary Laura travels nationwide to speak with audiences of all kinds — from ticketed luncheons for 100 women to ballroom keynotes for 500 professionals to cozy discussion groups of all sizes in any setting: conference rooms, restaurants, homes, school auditoriums, bookstores, libraries, supper clubs… you name it. Give her a mic, gather up your colleagues / friends / book club / parents association / writing group / secret society / what-have-you, and she can speak from 20 minutes up to an hour (or other timing, depending on what you need).

Combining an inspirational talk with a “grownup story time” live reading from I Miss You When I Blink — and incorporating audience Q&A and discussion whenever possible — she brings humor, relatability, and meaning to every gathering. If you’re looking to liven up your event or offer your attendees a session that’s conversational, down-to-earth, fun, and refreshing, Mary Laura might be the speaker you’re looking for.

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Topics include:

Perfectionism — Ah, the highs and lows of living according to a checklist. Mary Laura has been there, and that’s a big part of what I Miss You When I Blink is about. For audiences of driven, successful, achievement-oriented folks (and/or the people who love them) Mary Laura brings a message of understanding, humor, and hope.

Creativity — Ever feel like you go through life seeing things differently from others? Great! Mary Laura shares a reading about being out-of-sync with people around you, and how that can be a good thing, whether you’re a corporate group who wants to be inspired to think outside the box or you’re a group of aspiring writers wanting to talk craft.

What to Read — Having spent several years as a bookseller with one of the nation’s leading independent bookstores — as well as an Emmy-winning co-host of a literary interview show on public television — Mary Laura always has a list of great reads handy. She’s happy to tack a customized reading list onto any talk.

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Books: Mary Laura would love to connect you with an independent bookstore in your area to handle onsite book sales of I Miss You When I Blink or provide attendees with books in advance.

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“As she spoke the last words of her talk about perfectionism, you could have heard a pin drop. Mary Laura had everyone in that room riveted. She spoke with a genuine intensity and levity so refreshing you couldn’t help but feel like you were listening to the story of a friend you had always known. Bravo!” – Dawn Pumpelly, Women’s Economic Development Council and The Scout Guide, Huntsville, AL

“Mary Laura was awesome. I have never heard a large room as intently focused as the lunchtime ballroom of our annual ERB conference while she read. Attendees were still talking the next day about it.” – Tom Rochon, CEO, Educational Records Bureau, New York

“We thought it was important to bring in an author who could speak to topics that our employees could relate to — such as the pressures of being perfect, the importance of balancing different aspects of your life, and the experience of thinking, ‘Who am I and what am I doing to do next?'” Mary Laura and I Miss You When I Blink were the perfect fit. Our employees loved hearing her speak and have raved about the book. We were so glad to highlight a woman that our colleagues could connect with by addressing issues that truly matter to them.” – Elinor Cleveland, Director of Corporate Events, Guggenheim Partners, New York

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BONUS: Are you looking for someone who makes faces and talks with her hands? You’ve come to the right place.