News

“An Evening With” – Stuttering Awareness and Mental Well-being Ireland

“An Evening With” – Stuttering Awareness and Mental Well-being Ireland

I am excited and honoured to be invited to take part in Stuttering Awareness and Mental Well-being Ireland’s ongoing “An Evening With” series. I will have the opportunity to share my insights about stuttering with two other authors who wrote their own memoirs on the same topic. See the event summary below along with information to attend.

Tomorrow the 20th of July at 7.00.pm we continue our platform of verbal opportunity as we present “An Evening With” Mr Robert O Brien, Mr Darren Benham, Mr Michael O Shea, and our host for the evening Ms Mary Moorehead. The evening will be unique, we will be in the company of four people with verbal differences they all “Stutter” Three of them are authors of books on their own lives and experiences of Stuttering, three different reasons, three different perspectives, three different experiences of putting pen to paper and publish. Mary, our host for the evening is now an accomplished presenter, interviewer and supporter of the Stuttering Community, Robert is the author of “One More Drive” Darren is the author of “Stammer” Michael is the author of “Why I Called My Sister Harry” This is a unique opportunity to connect and learn as they share what they did, why they did it, what they learned along the way, why they are willing to share their generous time and experiences with us.

NOTE: Due to Covid-19, Darren Benham is unable to attend tonight and another author, Mary Wood will be in attendance. 

The Zoom Details are Meeting I.D. 704 682 8814. Passcode: Fpzd2f. More information on all the author’s books is readily available on many social media platforms.”People Who Sutter, Helping And Supporting Each Other, About As Good As It Gets”

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
Irish Book Launch: July 10th 2022

Irish Book Launch: July 10th 2022

Coming home to Ireland after years of lockdown was thrilling and rather emotional for me. It has been a long time coming, as has the launch of Just One More Drive: The true story of a stuttering homosexual and his race car in Ireland.

July the 10th will be the 'official' launch and the venue is the Eden House in Rathfarnham. This will be a family friendly event and run from 3-6pm. Finger food will be served and there will be a raffle to win a ride in a helicopter. That sounds rather random, but believe me, it brings my story full circle.

All are welcome, and if you have already bought a copy of my book, feel free to come along and I will happily sign it.

You can check out the promotional video below and I hope to see you on July 10th.

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
I’ll be presenting at StutterFEST this Saturday (May 7th 2022)

I’ll be presenting at StutterFEST this Saturday (May 7th 2022)

I am very honoured and excited to be presenting at StutterFEST this Saturday!

Starting from 6:20pm PST, I will be joined by Dan Dumsha and Wendy Duke as we demonstrate how to bring improv skills to people who stutter through the "Laughter Lab" and then from 6:40pm PST, I will look at the idea of cultivating a "Mighty Mindset" around stuttering and how shifting how we think is an access to true freedom.

This is a global, day-long event and is run by the World Stuttering Network. For more information on this organization and the event itself, check out their website at World Stuttering Network

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
Living in the Shadow of Bullying – Pink Shirt Day 2022

Living in the Shadow of Bullying – Pink Shirt Day 2022

I struggled to come up with something meaningful to mark Pink Shirt Day. Like many other people, I experienced bullying first hand and what I know is that It was never about the sticks or stones or names that couldn’t hurt me. It was about how those experiences shaped the man I would become in later years. That is the shadow that bullying casts.

Day like today matter because it shows everyone who has ever been bullied that they are not alone and there is a massive community out there ready to support them and help them move beyond bullying.

Happy Pink Shirt Day 2022.

The full blog can be viewed in the link below:

https://www.tidewaterpress.ca/living-in-the-shadow-of-bullying/

 

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
Expanding Distribution in 2022

Expanding Distribution in 2022

2022 is shaping up to be a very exciting year for my publisher Tidewater Press.

As of today, UTP Press will be distributing all their books across Canada, which includes Just One More Drive: The true story of a stuttering homosexual and his race car. University of Toronto Press Distribution represents more than 70 book imprints for distribution in Canada, the United States, and around the world. UTP’s clients include publishers specializing in scholarly, general and literary trade, children’s, and educational titles.

Additionally, from May 2022, sales representation for Tidewater Press titles will be provided by Hornblower Group. Since its beginnings in 1978, Hornblower Group has been one of Canada’s most respected publishing sales teams.  Specialists in the Canadian publishing marketplace, they work with domestic and international publishers and suppliers, building their profiles in the Canadian market and helping to ensure that their books and products are highly visible and sought-after by retailers and consumers in Eastern Canada and in association with our western sales group, across the country.

Naturally I am very excited at this news and feel privileged to be a part of this journey. Congratulations to everyone at Tidewater and here is to a great year working together.

 

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
The Unblockables on Some Stutter, Luh!

The Unblockables on Some Stutter, Luh!

Wendy Duke, Dan Dumsha and myself had the pleasure of appearing on the Some Stutter, Luh! podcast recently. It was my first experience of being on a podcast and am thrilled with the result. Greg O'Grady and Katelyn Mayo were wonderful hosts. Greg is a person who stutters and Katelyn is training to be a speech pathologist, so I would consider them both experts. On a more personal note, having the opportunity to share about the Unblockables and discuss stuttering in general was very empowering for me.

Some Stutter, Luh! have a number of great podcasts with various guests. I would highly recommend checking some of them out. Our episode can be listened to by clicking on the link below.

https://anchor.fm/katelyn-mayo/episodes/Interview-with-Tightrope-Improv-Theatre-e1cmbug?fbclid=IwAR3rknUjEG65PXZL4LH9CLCw6Z6y6VbgxJniBjSuaUPtRC8aefFfEZdjL6s

 

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
The Unblockables at the Canadian Stuttering Association Conference this weekend.

The Unblockables at the Canadian Stuttering Association Conference this weekend.

The annual Canadian Stuttering Association's conference is taking place this weekend from the 12-14th of November and the Unblockables will be presenting a workshop called the "Laughter Lab" on Sunday afternoon between 2:45-3:45 EST (11:45-12:45 PST).

In case you do not know, the Unblockables consists of myself along with Wendy Duke and Dan Dumsha. Duke is the director of Columbia Speech and Language Services Inc. and has decades of experience as a speech pathologist under her belt. Dumsha is the director of Improv and Wellness at Tightrope Theatre here in downtown Vancouver. Together we have created and facilitated a course to teach improv skills to people who stutter, which we call "The Unblockables".

This weekend we have the honour of presenting a workshop called "The Laughter Lab" that will provide a sample of what we have to offer. We will teach the importance of presence along with laughter and celebrating mistakes. It will be a lot of fun and offer an opportunity for people who stutter to let go and embrace their speaking personalities. 

For more information on the CSA conference, including schedule and registration you can check out their website at:

https://www.stutter.ca

For more information about the Unblockables, including upcoming courses in 2022 check out the Tightrope Theatre website

https://tightropetheatre.com/improv-for-stuttering

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
An Evening with Robert O’Brien.

An Evening with Robert O’Brien.

Stuttering Awareness Mental Wellbeing Ireland is a campaign in Ireland to promote awareness around the issues of stuttering and mental health. It is fronted by three men; Michael O'Shea, Jamie Googan and Michael C. Ryan. For me, I am thrilled to be asked to take part in it as it allows me to contribute to a worthy campaign and re-connect with the stuttering community back home.

Additionally, my introduction is rather glowing.

As part of our ongoing Thursday evening "An Evening With" zoom sessions, we are delighted to present "An Evening With" Robert O Brien. Robert is a person who is challenged by Stuttering and is the author of "Just One More Drive" he is also an experienced mentor and advocates for the stuttering community from where he now resides in Vancouver Canada. Robert is a teacher by profession and is also actively involved in acting which he puts to good use by running acting workshops for people who are challenged by Stuttering. A man of immense talent and experience in other areas of verbal communication he is much sought after as a host and event facilitator, he is looking forward to sharing with us all his journey to date out of the mindset and mentality of Stuttering.

All are welcome to attend this Thursday evening the 11th of November from 7.30pm to 8.30pm. local Irish time and 11:30am to 12:30pm PST Vancouver time.

The Zoom details are ID. 704 682 8814.
Passcode: Fpzd2f

To find out more about this campaign check out the "Stuttering Awareness Mental Wellbeing Ireland" Facebook page.

Michael O'Shea, Jamie Googan and Michael C. Ryan

Posted by Robert O'Brien in News
International Stuttering Awareness Day 2021 – Round Up

International Stuttering Awareness Day 2021 – Round Up

I had a wonderfully busy International Stuttering Awareness Day 2021.

In the morning, I joined fellow authors from the McGuire Programme back home in Ireland for a discussion around stuttering. Darren Benham, Michael O'Shea and myself have all written books about our experiences as people who stutter. The goal of the hour-long "Stuttering Stories" discussion was to share, inspire and educate people around the subject of stuttering. Mary Moorehead did an amazing job of facilitating and I was thrilled and energized afterwards.

You can view the full discussion on YouTube via the link below:

https://youtu.be/YhGk7pyM_14

Later in the day, I appeared on the CBC radio show On The Coast and I spoke to the host, Gloria Macarenko about stuttering and my book. You can listen to the piece by clicking on the link below:

https://www.cbc.ca/listen/live-radio/1-46-on-the-coast/clip/15873987-international-stuttering-awareness-day?fbclid=IwAR3YgMk_ktMIN540NAuun8zDiPusz2teLnVfWjLYaaxT5lM_XrxOo846u8s

All in all, I had an amazing day. To be able to talk and share about stuttering on days like ISAD is vital to raise awareness and show that we are all in this together and we do have a voice.

 

Posted by Robert O'Brien