Speech Prep

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Writing a speech can be a daunting task for many people. Perhaps you're worried about the quality of your writing skills, you're nervous about your public speaking inexperience or maybe you just don't know what to write. By setting out a few clear goals before you start writing your speech, you will be better equipped to judge its progress and success of your speech prior to its public airing. A hilarious Best Man speech may have your audience rolling in the aisles, but if you fail to give tribute to the Bride and Groom you will have failed in your role. By setting clear goals, you will be better positioned to judge the likely success of your speech. This section will show you how to write a speech, subsequent chapters will show you how to deliver that speech, and yes, conquer your public speaking nerves. At this stage you should have a great plan for your speech. That is to say: you have considered the occasion at which you will be speaking, potentially speaking to a selection of people who can help you write your speech. You have also thought about the potential themes of your speech and identified one primary theme with a small number of sub-themes. You have also given thought to the people key to your speech including the subject(s) of the speech and those who know them, other speakers and the audience. This set of lessons will show you how to turn this collection of thoughts and ideas into a great speech. We will look at the structure of a speech and then return to the concept of key messages or themes of your speech. It will then be time to start writing your speech, first by creating outlines of the speech, then by moving onto drafts, before reaching the final version. Speech Structure - How to organize your speech

Most good writing, we are told, must have structure. A good speech is no exception. By providing your speech with a beginning, a middle, and an end, you will lay the foundations for a successful speech that fulfills all of your aspirations. Opening

The first thirty seconds of your speech are probably the most important. In that period of time you must grab the attention of the audience, and engage their interest in what you have to say in your speech. This can be achieved in several ways. For example you could raise a thought-provoking question, make an interesting or controversial statement, recite a relevant quotation or even recount a joke. Once you have won the attention of the audience, your speech should move seamlessly to the middle of your speech. Body

The body of your speech will always be the largest part of your speech. At this point your audience will have been introduced to you and the subject of your speech (as set out in your opening) and will hopefully be ready to hear your arguments, your thoughts or even your ramblings on the subject of your speech. The best way to set out the body of your speech is by formulating a series of points that you would like to raise. In the context of your speech, a "point" could be a statement about a product, a joke about the bridegroom or a fond memory of the subject of a eulogy. The points should be organized so that related points follow one another so that each point builds upon the previous one. This will also give your speech a more logical progression, and make the job of the listener a far easier one. Don't try to overwhelm your audience with countless points. It is better to make a small number of points well than to have too many points, none of which are made satisfactorily. Closing

Like your Opening, the Closing of your speech must contain some of your strongest material. You should view the closing of your speech as an opportunity. It is an opportunity to: * – Summarize the main points of your speech

* – Provide some further food for thought for your listeners * – Leave your audience with positive memories of your speech * – End with a final thought/emotion (e.g. With well wishes to the Bride and Groom, With fond memories of a...
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