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Part: 6 The Moment of Truth > Sample Informative Speech - Pg. 280

280 Appendix B. Sample Speeches In this section of the book, you'll find three sample speeches: an informative speech, an entertaining speech, and a persuasive speech. Each illustrates a series of different speech techniques covered in this book. Study these examples to see how everything you learned fits together. Sample Informative Speech This speech was delivered before a group of community leaders and business people at a luncheon meeting of Rotary International. The purpose of the speech was to inform the audience about comic books; the speaker is Bob Rozakis, who has more than 25 years of experience in the industry. The speech took about 15 minutes to deliver, including the use of visual aids. It is presented here to illustrate a contemporary example of the type of informative speech you would be likely to deliver in similar situations. The History of Comic Books Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. I've been asked to give you a short history of the world of comic books. As some of you already know, I'm the executive director for production at DC Comics. I also wrote comic books for about 10 years. In my speech today, I'll hit the high points in the history of comic books and maybe have time for questions at the end. The comic book industry began in the mid-1930s. A man named M. C. Gaines, known as "Max" to his friends, had the idea that compiling a collection of newspaper comic strips in a magazine form would work well as a premium giveaway. So, the first comic book was just that--reprints --and it was given away to people who bought Ivory soap. Other companies also saw the pop- ularity of such magazines, and very soon all the usable strips were being reprinted. In stepped Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson, a man with a hefty paper supply and a solid printing contract. Nicholson started his company by printing New Comics and New Fun Comics, using all new material. And he hired Max Gaines to be in charge. In 1936, they started another new title, Detective Comics, the first comic book devoted to a single theme. It was this title that gave the company its name: DC Comics. In 1938, looking for a lead feature to launch another new title, Gaines and his editors settled on a strip that had been created five years earlier. It had been unsuccessfully offered as a news- paper strip by two teenagers from Cleveland. The character could lift cars, leap over buildings, and bounce bullets off his chest. The young writer-artist duo were Jerry Seigel and Joe Shuster. The new magazine was named Action Comics. The character was called Superman. Superman proved to be an overnight success. As quickly as they could, other publishers (and DC itself) sought to make economic lightning strike again and again. Costumed heroes arrived by the busload, including Batman, The Flash, Green Lantern, and Wonder Woman from DC; Captain America, the Human Torch, and Sub-Mariner from Timely; Captain Marvel and the Marvel Family from Fawcett; and Plastic Man and The Spirit from Quality. It was an age of heroes that lasted through the second World War and into the late '40s.