Bush's Big Buck Speeches

Laura Bush's speech was to CEOs and executives of NACDS, whose members include pharmacies such as CVS and Walmart.

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For the most part, presidential speakers stick to uncontroversial topics, discussing their experience in office, their life leading up to the presidency, and offering advice to others who wish to succeed in life.

Bush, who was known for often flubbing his lines, has given dozens of speeches around the country this year, including a July 4 pep talk at a rodeo in Oklahoma, and a speech about U.S.-India relations at a conference held by the Hindustan Times in India.

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Speeches are only one way that former presidents earn a living after they leave the White House.

Bush plans to publish a book with Random House in 2010, tentatively titled "Decision Points," about 12 difficult decisions he has made. His first book, "A Charge to Keep," was published in 1999 by HarperCollins. Laura Bush has signed a deal worth an estimated $2 million, according to the New York Post, for a memoir to be published with Simon & Schuster in 2010. The former first lady has also penned a children's book titled "Read All About It" with her daughter Jenna. A portion of the book's sales goes to charity.

Bush Competes With Clintons for Audience

Considering that the former president left office with a disapproval rating of 68 percent, the couple will be lucky to draw the same audiences as their predecessors.

Bill Clinton sold 2.25 million copies of his 2004 memoir "My Life," which earned him a $15 million advance. His wife, current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, was paid an $8 million advance for her 2003 memoir "Living History," also published by Simon & Schuster, which sold 2.5 million copies.

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