In preparing some presentations for my summer course in Korea, I came across some resources on public speaking and powerpoint. This website in particular is quite interesting:www.presentationzen.com
I am reading the blogger's (Garr Reynolds') book by the same name, and it is a very interesting indictment of powerpoint as a tool that leads most of us to mis-use it and make our presentations worse instead of better. There is a culture of bad powerpoint out there ("death by powerpoint" in his words) and we must fight against it!
As with many things, it comes down to time, hard work, and perseverance. The easiest thing to do is to sit down in front of powerpoint, type in whatever comes to mind, and then read it out loud during your presentation. The harder and better thing to do is to plan your presentation on paper, really think about your main message, be creative in designing visual slides that communicate that message, and prepare a handout that gives all the necessary details for future reference. Then you have to find or create all the necessary high-quality pictures, put the slides together, and practice your actual talk using notes that are not on the slides. You can do it! It's worth it to put the time in and feel like a professional. We have to take pride in our work and refuse to shy away from the labor it requires. As the award-winning teacher Rafe Esquith would say, "There are no shortcuts!"