you have thirty minutes to make your case. show me you’ve thought about it (this includes your garments). don’t waste time with “framing.” use your time with verve. don’t give us an apologetic “nearing the end” marker. I want to see your energy focused on the words, you invested in the words. those words are your being. your case. come on.
thanking people is nice but it eats into performance time; everyone knows you are grateful to be there.
in some rare cases the patter is part of the whole art form, it’s essential. but in general a little framing goes a long way.
speak into the mic. that’s why it’s there. feel free to use the space. you don’t have to stay still the whole time. you can hold the mic, if you want to.
nothing you do should be perfunctory.
nervousness is good: focus it.
if you are going to drink water during your reading, consider making a kind of ceremony of it.
when I say “speak into the mic,” I also mean, enjoy hearing your voice in the monitor. let your own voice resonate in your head and in the room.
I have lots of other thoughts on poetry readings.