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How to write a speech that your audience remembers

Confident-woman-giving-a-conference-with-a-digital-presentation-how-to-give-a-speech

Whether in a work meeting or at an investor panel, you might give a speech at some point. And no matter how excited you are about the opportunity, the experience can be nerve-wracking . 

But feeling butterflies doesn’t mean you can’t give a great speech. With the proper preparation and a clear outline, apprehensive public speakers and natural wordsmiths alike can write and present a compelling message. Here’s how to write a good speech you’ll be proud to deliver.

What is good speech writing?

Good speech writing is the art of crafting words and ideas into a compelling, coherent, and memorable message that resonates with the audience. Here are some key elements of great speech writing:

  • It begins with clearly understanding the speech's purpose and the audience it seeks to engage. 
  • A well-written speech clearly conveys its central message, ensuring that the audience understands and retains the key points. 
  • It is structured thoughtfully, with a captivating opening, a well-organized body, and a conclusion that reinforces the main message. 
  • Good speech writing embraces the power of engaging content, weaving in stories, examples, and relatable anecdotes to connect with the audience on both intellectual and emotional levels. 

Ultimately, it is the combination of these elements, along with the authenticity and delivery of the speaker , that transforms words on a page into a powerful and impactful spoken narrative.

What makes a good speech?

A great speech includes several key qualities, but three fundamental elements make a speech truly effective:

Clarity and purpose

Remembering the audience, cohesive structure.

While other important factors make a speech a home run, these three elements are essential for writing an effective speech.

The main elements of a good speech

The main elements of a speech typically include:

  • Introduction: The introduction sets the stage for your speech and grabs the audience's attention. It should include a hook or attention-grabbing opening, introduce the topic, and provide an overview of what will be covered.
  • Opening/captivating statement: This is a strong statement that immediately engages the audience and creates curiosity about the speech topics.
  • Thesis statement/central idea: The thesis statement or central idea is a concise statement that summarizes the main point or argument of your speech. It serves as a roadmap for the audience to understand what your speech is about.
  • Body: The body of the speech is where you elaborate on your main points or arguments. Each point is typically supported by evidence, examples, statistics, or anecdotes. The body should be organized logically and coherently, with smooth transitions between the main points.
  • Supporting evidence: This includes facts, data, research findings, expert opinions, or personal stories that support and strengthen your main points. Well-chosen and credible evidence enhances the persuasive power of your speech.
  • Transitions: Transitions are phrases or statements that connect different parts of your speech, guiding the audience from one idea to the next. Effective transitions signal the shifts in topics or ideas and help maintain a smooth flow throughout the speech.
  • Counterarguments and rebuttals (if applicable): If your speech involves addressing opposing viewpoints or counterarguments, you should acknowledge and address them. Presenting counterarguments makes your speech more persuasive and demonstrates critical thinking.
  • Conclusion: The conclusion is the final part of your speech and should bring your message to a satisfying close. Summarize your main points, restate your thesis statement, and leave the audience with a memorable closing thought or call to action.
  • Closing statement: This is the final statement that leaves a lasting impression and reinforces the main message of your speech. It can be a call to action, a thought-provoking question, a powerful quote, or a memorable anecdote.
  • Delivery and presentation: How you deliver your speech is also an essential element to consider. Pay attention to your tone, body language, eye contact , voice modulation, and timing. Practice and rehearse your speech, and try using the 7-38-55 rule to ensure confident and effective delivery.

While the order and emphasis of these elements may vary depending on the type of speech and audience, these elements provide a framework for organizing and delivering a successful speech.

Man-holding-microphone-at-panel-while-talking--how-to-give-a-speech

How to structure a good speech

You know what message you want to transmit, who you’re delivering it to, and even how you want to say it. But you need to know how to start, develop, and close a speech before writing it. 

Think of a speech like an essay. It should have an introduction, conclusion, and body sections in between. This places ideas in a logical order that the audience can better understand and follow them. Learning how to make a speech with an outline gives your storytelling the scaffolding it needs to get its point across.

Here’s a general speech structure to guide your writing process:

  • Explanation 1
  • Explanation 2
  • Explanation 3

How to write a compelling speech opener

Some research shows that engaged audiences pay attention for only 15 to 20 minutes at a time. Other estimates are even lower, citing that people stop listening intently in fewer than 10 minutes . If you make a good first impression at the beginning of your speech, you have a better chance of interesting your audience through the middle when attention spans fade. 

Implementing the INTRO model can help grab and keep your audience’s attention as soon as you start speaking. This acronym stands for interest, need, timing, roadmap, and objectives, and it represents the key points you should hit in an opening. 

Here’s what to include for each of these points: 

  • Interest : Introduce yourself or your topic concisely and speak with confidence . Write a compelling opening statement using relevant data or an anecdote that the audience can relate to.
  • Needs : The audience is listening to you because they have something to learn. If you’re pitching a new app idea to a panel of investors, those potential partners want to discover more about your product and what they can earn from it. Read the room and gently remind them of the purpose of your speech. 
  • Timing : When appropriate, let your audience know how long you’ll speak. This lets listeners set expectations and keep tabs on their own attention span. If a weary audience member knows you’ll talk for 40 minutes, they can better manage their energy as that time goes on. 
  • Routemap : Give a brief overview of the three main points you’ll cover in your speech. If an audience member’s attention starts to drop off and they miss a few sentences, they can more easily get their bearings if they know the general outline of the presentation.
  • Objectives : Tell the audience what you hope to achieve, encouraging them to listen to the end for the payout. 

Writing the middle of a speech

The body of your speech is the most information-dense section. Facts, visual aids, PowerPoints — all this information meets an audience with a waning attention span. Sticking to the speech structure gives your message focus and keeps you from going off track, making everything you say as useful as possible.

Limit the middle of your speech to three points, and support them with no more than three explanations. Following this model organizes your thoughts and prevents you from offering more information than the audience can retain. 

Using this section of the speech to make your presentation interactive can add interest and engage your audience. Try including a video or demonstration to break the monotony. A quick poll or survey also keeps the audience on their toes. 

Wrapping the speech up

To you, restating your points at the end can feel repetitive and dull. You’ve practiced countless times and heard it all before. But repetition aids memory and learning , helping your audience retain what you’ve told them. Use your speech’s conclusion to summarize the main points with a few short sentences.

Try to end on a memorable note, like posing a motivational quote or a thoughtful question the audience can contemplate once they leave. In proposal or pitch-style speeches, consider landing on a call to action (CTA) that invites your audience to take the next step.

People-clapping-after-coworker-gave-a-speech-how-to-give-a-speech

How to write a good speech

If public speaking gives you the jitters, you’re not alone. Roughly 80% of the population feels nervous before giving a speech, and another 10% percent experiences intense anxiety and sometimes even panic. 

The fear of failure can cause procrastination and can cause you to put off your speechwriting process until the last minute. Finding the right words takes time and preparation, and if you’re already feeling nervous, starting from a blank page might seem even harder.

But putting in the effort despite your stress is worth it. Presenting a speech you worked hard on fosters authenticity and connects you to the subject matter, which can help your audience understand your points better. Human connection is all about honesty and vulnerability, and if you want to connect to the people you’re speaking to, they should see that in you.

1. Identify your objectives and target audience

Before diving into the writing process, find healthy coping strategies to help you stop worrying . Then you can define your speech’s purpose, think about your target audience, and start identifying your objectives. Here are some questions to ask yourself and ground your thinking : 

  • What purpose do I want my speech to achieve? 
  • What would it mean to me if I achieved the speech’s purpose?
  • What audience am I writing for? 
  • What do I know about my audience? 
  • What values do I want to transmit? 
  • If the audience remembers one take-home message, what should it be? 
  • What do I want my audience to feel, think, or do after I finish speaking? 
  • What parts of my message could be confusing and require further explanation?

2. Know your audience

Understanding your audience is crucial for tailoring your speech effectively. Consider the demographics of your audience, their interests, and their expectations. For instance, if you're addressing a group of healthcare professionals, you'll want to use medical terminology and data that resonate with them. Conversely, if your audience is a group of young students, you'd adjust your content to be more relatable to their experiences and interests. 

3. Choose a clear message

Your message should be the central idea that you want your audience to take away from your speech. Let's say you're giving a speech on climate change. Your clear message might be something like, "Individual actions can make a significant impact on mitigating climate change." Throughout your speech, all your points and examples should support this central message, reinforcing it for your audience.

4. Structure your speech

Organizing your speech properly keeps your audience engaged and helps them follow your ideas. The introduction should grab your audience's attention and introduce the topic. For example, if you're discussing space exploration, you could start with a fascinating fact about a recent space mission. In the body, you'd present your main points logically, such as the history of space exploration, its scientific significance, and future prospects. Finally, in the conclusion, you'd summarize your key points and reiterate the importance of space exploration in advancing human knowledge.

5. Use engaging content for clarity

Engaging content includes stories, anecdotes, statistics, and examples that illustrate your main points. For instance, if you're giving a speech about the importance of reading, you might share a personal story about how a particular book changed your perspective. You could also include statistics on the benefits of reading, such as improved cognitive abilities and empathy.

6. Maintain clarity and simplicity

It's essential to communicate your ideas clearly. Avoid using overly technical jargon or complex language that might confuse your audience. For example, if you're discussing a medical breakthrough with a non-medical audience, explain complex terms in simple, understandable language.

7. Practice and rehearse

Practice is key to delivering a great speech. Rehearse multiple times to refine your delivery, timing, and tone. Consider using a mirror or recording yourself to observe your body language and gestures. For instance, if you're giving a motivational speech, practice your gestures and expressions to convey enthusiasm and confidence.

8. Consider nonverbal communication

Your body language, tone of voice, and gestures should align with your message . If you're delivering a speech on leadership, maintain strong eye contact to convey authority and connection with your audience. A steady pace and varied tone can also enhance your speech's impact.

9. Engage your audience

Engaging your audience keeps them interested and attentive. Encourage interaction by asking thought-provoking questions or sharing relatable anecdotes. If you're giving a speech on teamwork, ask the audience to recall a time when teamwork led to a successful outcome, fostering engagement and connection.

10. Prepare for Q&A

Anticipate potential questions or objections your audience might have and prepare concise, well-informed responses. If you're delivering a speech on a controversial topic, such as healthcare reform, be ready to address common concerns, like the impact on healthcare costs or access to services, during the Q&A session.

By following these steps and incorporating examples that align with your specific speech topic and purpose, you can craft and deliver a compelling and impactful speech that resonates with your audience.

Woman-at-home-doing-research-in-her-laptop-how-to-give-a-speech

Tools for writing a great speech

There are several helpful tools available for speechwriting, both technological and communication-related. Here are a few examples:

  • Word processing software: Tools like Microsoft Word, Google Docs, or other word processors provide a user-friendly environment for writing and editing speeches. They offer features like spell-checking, grammar correction, formatting options, and easy revision tracking.
  • Presentation software: Software such as Microsoft PowerPoint or Google Slides is useful when creating visual aids to accompany your speech. These tools allow you to create engaging slideshows with text, images, charts, and videos to enhance your presentation.
  • Speechwriting Templates: Online platforms or software offer pre-designed templates specifically for speechwriting. These templates provide guidance on structuring your speech and may include prompts for different sections like introductions, main points, and conclusions.
  • Rhetorical devices and figures of speech: Rhetorical tools such as metaphors, similes, alliteration, and parallelism can add impact and persuasion to your speech. Resources like books, websites, or academic papers detailing various rhetorical devices can help you incorporate them effectively.
  • Speechwriting apps: Mobile apps designed specifically for speechwriting can be helpful in organizing your thoughts, creating outlines, and composing a speech. These apps often provide features like voice recording, note-taking, and virtual prompts to keep you on track.
  • Grammar and style checkers: Online tools or plugins like Grammarly or Hemingway Editor help improve the clarity and readability of your speech by checking for grammar, spelling, and style errors. They provide suggestions for sentence structure, word choice, and overall tone.
  • Thesaurus and dictionary: Online or offline resources such as thesauruses and dictionaries help expand your vocabulary and find alternative words or phrases to express your ideas more effectively. They can also clarify meanings or provide context for unfamiliar terms.
  • Online speechwriting communities: Joining online forums or communities focused on speechwriting can be beneficial for getting feedback, sharing ideas, and learning from experienced speechwriters. It's an opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals and improve your public speaking skills through collaboration.

Remember, while these tools can assist in the speechwriting process, it's essential to use them thoughtfully and adapt them to your specific needs and style. The most important aspect of speechwriting remains the creativity, authenticity, and connection with your audience that you bring to your speech.

Man-holding-microphone-while-speaking-in-public-how-to-give-a-speech

5 tips for writing a speech

Behind every great speech is an excellent idea and a speaker who refined it. But a successful speech is about more than the initial words on the page, and there are a few more things you can do to help it land.

Here are five more tips for writing and practicing your speech:

1. Structure first, write second

If you start the writing process before organizing your thoughts, you may have to re-order, cut, and scrap the sentences you worked hard on. Save yourself some time by using a speech structure, like the one above, to order your talking points first. This can also help you identify unclear points or moments that disrupt your flow.

2. Do your homework

Data strengthens your argument with a scientific edge. Research your topic with an eye for attention-grabbing statistics, or look for findings you can use to support each point. If you’re pitching a product or service, pull information from company metrics that demonstrate past or potential successes. 

Audience members will likely have questions, so learn all talking points inside and out. If you tell investors that your product will provide 12% returns, for example, come prepared with projections that support that statement.

3. Sound like yourself

Memorable speakers have distinct voices. Think of Martin Luther King Jr’s urgent, inspiring timbre or Oprah’s empathetic, personal tone . Establish your voice — one that aligns with your personality and values — and stick with it. If you’re a motivational speaker, keep your tone upbeat to inspire your audience . If you’re the CEO of a startup, try sounding assured but approachable. 

4. Practice

As you practice a speech, you become more confident , gain a better handle on the material, and learn the outline so well that unexpected questions are less likely to trip you up. Practice in front of a colleague or friend for honest feedback about what you could change, and speak in front of the mirror to tweak your nonverbal communication and body language .

5. Remember to breathe

When you’re stressed, you breathe more rapidly . It can be challenging to talk normally when you can’t regulate your breath. Before your presentation, try some mindful breathing exercises so that when the day comes, you already have strategies that will calm you down and remain present . This can also help you control your voice and avoid speaking too quickly.

How to ghostwrite a great speech for someone else

Ghostwriting a speech requires a unique set of skills, as you're essentially writing a piece that will be delivered by someone else. Here are some tips on how to effectively ghostwrite a speech:

  • Understand the speaker's voice and style : Begin by thoroughly understanding the speaker's personality, speaking style, and preferences. This includes their tone, humor, and any personal anecdotes they may want to include.
  • Interview the speaker : Have a detailed conversation with the speaker to gather information about their speech's purpose, target audience, key messages, and any specific points they want to emphasize. Ask for personal stories or examples they may want to include.
  • Research thoroughly : Research the topic to ensure you have a strong foundation of knowledge. This helps you craft a well-informed and credible speech.
  • Create an outline : Develop a clear outline that includes the introduction, main points, supporting evidence, and a conclusion. Share this outline with the speaker for their input and approval.
  • Write in the speaker's voice : While crafting the speech, maintain the speaker's voice and style. Use language and phrasing that feel natural to them. If they have a particular way of expressing ideas, incorporate that into the speech.
  • Craft a captivating opening : Begin the speech with a compelling opening that grabs the audience's attention. This could be a relevant quote, an interesting fact, a personal anecdote, or a thought-provoking question.
  • Organize content logically : Ensure the speech flows logically, with each point building on the previous one. Use transitions to guide the audience from one idea to the next smoothly.
  • Incorporate engaging stories and examples : Include anecdotes, stories, and real-life examples that illustrate key points and make the speech relatable and memorable.
  • Edit and revise : Edit the speech carefully for clarity, grammar, and coherence. Ensure the speech is the right length and aligns with the speaker's time constraints.
  • Seek feedback : Share drafts of the speech with the speaker for their feedback and revisions. They may have specific changes or additions they'd like to make.
  • Practice delivery : If possible, work with the speaker on their delivery. Practice the speech together, allowing the speaker to become familiar with the content and your writing style.
  • Maintain confidentiality : As a ghostwriter, it's essential to respect the confidentiality and anonymity of the work. Do not disclose that you wrote the speech unless you have the speaker's permission to do so.
  • Be flexible : Be open to making changes and revisions as per the speaker's preferences. Your goal is to make them look good and effectively convey their message.
  • Meet deadlines : Stick to agreed-upon deadlines for drafts and revisions. Punctuality and reliability are essential in ghostwriting.
  • Provide support : Support the speaker during their preparation and rehearsal process. This can include helping with cue cards, speech notes, or any other materials they need.

Remember that successful ghostwriting is about capturing the essence of the speaker while delivering a well-structured and engaging speech. Collaboration, communication, and adaptability are key to achieving this.

Give your best speech yet

Learn how to make a speech that’ll hold an audience’s attention by structuring your thoughts and practicing frequently. Put the effort into writing and preparing your content, and aim to improve your breathing, eye contact , and body language as you practice. The more you work on your speech, the more confident you’ll become.

The energy you invest in writing an effective speech will help your audience remember and connect to every concept. Remember: some life-changing philosophies have come from good speeches, so give your words a chance to resonate with others. You might even change their thinking.

Elevate your communication skills

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Elizabeth Perry, ACC

Elizabeth Perry is a Coach Community Manager at BetterUp. She uses strategic engagement strategies to cultivate a learning community across a global network of Coaches through in-person and virtual experiences, technology-enabled platforms, and strategic coaching industry partnerships. With over 3 years of coaching experience and a certification in transformative leadership and life coaching from Sofia University, Elizabeth leverages transpersonal psychology expertise to help coaches and clients gain awareness of their behavioral and thought patterns, discover their purpose and passions, and elevate their potential. She is a lifelong student of psychology, personal growth, and human potential as well as an ICF-certified ACC transpersonal life and leadership Coach.

6 presentation skills and how to improve them

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Speech Writing: How to write a speech in 5 steps

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Every great speech starts with an idea, be it for school or work or a TED talk about your area of speciality. We investigate how to get all those ideas from your head to a written speech and then back to your heart. Author of “ How to be Brilliant at Public Speaking “, Sarah Lloyd-Hughes explains the five steps of speech writing…

Even heads of state and other renowned orators have help in writing a speech. They often have professional speech writers to provide them with great content, but you too can learn not only how to talk but also how to  write  a speech like a pro.

Here are 5 steps that we take our speakers through when they’re writing a speech – and it’s the same process as we use for writing  TED  style talks.

Speech writing step 1: Get focused

TED talks famously focus on ‘one idea worth spreading’ and this is what helps them to retain their power. Before you write a single line, figure out what the ONE idea is that you’ll shape your talk around.

When your talk has a single focus you’ll see huge benefits:

  • Clarity:  For yourself and your audience.
  • Easy to pass on:  Popular talks, like Simon Sinek’s TED talk ‘ How great leaders inspire action ‘ or Ken Robinson’s TED favourite ‘ Do schools kill creativity? ‘ are utterly focused and easy to pass on because they have just one idea.
  • Powerful:  When you’re digging in one hole you get deeper, likewise with your talk you can go further with one idea.
  • Memorability:  Audiences these days are overwhelmed with ideas and information. You need to be  much  simpler than you think to stand a chance of your message being remembered.

To find your ‘idea worth spreading’ takes a little time and skill, which is why we’ve  devised a complete programme for speakers who are interested in writing  World Class  Speeches ,  like the finest TED speakers.

But if you’re just looking for a place to start, these questions will help you get going:

  • What do I want to say?
  • What effect am I trying to have by speaking?
  • If I can only put across  one  message in my speech, what will that be?
  • What is my broader purpose in speaking?

You’re looking for one idea that is clear, interesting and hasn’t been heard before. Good luck!

Speech writing step 2: Think about your audience

Ironically, most speakers completely fail to think about their audience! Yet the best speakers are intimately aware of the needs, questions and doubts facing their audience.

Ask: To whom am I speaking?  Before you start writing you first must ask yourself  Who is my audience  and  what are they seeking ? Writing a speech for a group of human rights activists would be very different to a speech for business managers. Technology engineers might have a totally different perspective on your subject than a room full of English professors.  Thinking deeply about your audience’s needs is the quality of a public speaker I call  Empathy.  It’s an important starting point on your speech writing journey.

Ask: Why should they listen to you?  Great speech writing is grounded in purpose and message. Consider what qualifies you to speak; what you have to offer the audience that they would not be able to hear from anyone else (we all have something).

Ask: What do you want to leave your audience with?  As a result of your Empathetic investigations, what would be your desired outcome as a result of the speech? Decide what your main message will be and continually return to that primary point as you compose your speech. This keeps the audience (and you) focused. As Winston Churchill said:  “If you have an important point to make, don’t try to be subtle or clever. Use a pile driver. Hit the point once. Then come back and hit it again. Then hit it a third time with a tremendous whack. ”

Speech writing step 3: Build up your speech

Now you have a clear focus to your speech and an idea of how to communicate that clearly to your audience. That’s the skeleton of the speech. It’s now time to fill in that skeleton with meaty content:

  • Brain Storming.  Make lists of all the things you want to speak about. Once listed, it will be easier to cut or rearrange your points.
  • Categorize for the win.  Brainstorming should lead to a nice list with several categories. Speech writing is all about organization and finding what fits best with your audience and their needs. Think of these categories as stepping stones. Leaving a gap too large between any two stones and they will turn into stumbling blocks will sinking you and your audience. Speech writing is not very much different than writing a paper; thesis statement, support of the thesis, and a conclusion.
  • Edit for the jewels . Look for the key moments in your speech that will stimulate the hearts, minds and even stomachs of your audience. Seek the most vivid experiences and stories that you can use to make your point – these are what will make your speech stand out from all the other public speaking our there.

Speech writing step 4: Create a journey

Another key skill of speech writing is to get the right information in the right order. Think of your speech like a journey up a mountain:

Get ready for the trip (introduction).

  • The beginning of your speech is the place where you grab the attention of the audience and get them ready to go on a journey with you. For them to travel up your mountain with you they need to know where you’re going together, why it’s an interesting journey to go on and why you are a credible guide to lead them there.

Pass some interesting sights on the way (main body).

  • Keep an audience engaged for an entire speech by raising the stakes, or raising the tension as you progress through the speech. Think about contrasts between the ‘good’ and the ‘evil’ of your subject matter and contrast the two with stories, facts, ideas or examples.
  • Here you might write multiple sections to your speech, to help you stay focused. You might like to write an introduction, main body, and conclusion for each section also. All sections don’t have to be the same length. Take time to decide and write about the ones that need the most emphasis.

Reach your summit (climax).

  • The climax is the moment of maximum emotional intensity that most powerfully demonstrates your key message. Think of the key ‘Ahah!’ moment that you want to take your audience to. This is the moment where you reach the top of your mountain and marvel at the view together. It’s a powerful, but underused speech writing tool.

A speedy descent (the close).

  • Once you’ve hit your climax, the story is almost over. We don’t want to go all the way down the mountain with you, we’d much rather get airlifted off the top of the mountain whilst we still have the buzz of reaching our goal. This is what great speech writing manages time and again.
  • Strangely enough the close can be the hardest part of speech writing. Here’s where you get to hit home your action point – the key thing you want your audience to do differently as a result of listening to your speech. Often the close is where speakers undermine the power of the rest of their speech. So, write a memorable conclusion that captures the essence of your speech, give it some punch, and  stick  to it!

Speech writing step 5: Test your material

Practice your speech several times so that you can feel comfortable with the material. Try the speech out on camera or to a friend to see which parts are most powerful and which you can take the red pen to.

However skilled you are (or not) at speech writing, remember that you are the magic that makes the speech work. It’s your authentic voice that will shine to the audience them and inspire them towards your message.

Follow these speech writing tips, give it some practice and you’ll be sure to be a speech writing winner.

But I’ve collected my years of experience working with world-class conference speakers and TED speakers and distilled it into a  simple guidebook that you can access now for just £20 (+VAT) .

Ginger Leadership Communications

This showcase of inspiring female speakers is part of Ginger’s work with game changing leaders.

what is the first stage in speech writing

Rice Speechwriting

Beginners guide to what is a speech writing, what is a speech writing: a beginner’s guide, what is the purpose of speech writing.

The purpose of speech writing is to craft a compelling and effective speech that conveys a specific message or idea to an audience. It involves writing a script that is well-structured, engaging, and tailored to the speaker’s delivery style and the audience’s needs.

Have you ever been called upon to deliver a speech and didn’t know where to start? Or maybe you’re looking to improve your public speaking skills and wondering how speech writing can help. Whatever the case may be, this beginner’s guide on speech writing is just what you need. In this blog, we will cover everything from understanding the art of speech writing to key elements of an effective speech. We will also discuss techniques for engaging speech writing, the role of audience analysis in speech writing, time and length considerations, and how to practice and rehearse your speech. By the end of this article, you will have a clear understanding of how speech writing can improve your public speaking skills and make you feel confident when delivering your next big presentation.

Understanding the Art of Speech Writing

Crafting a speech involves melding spoken and written language. Tailoring the speech to the audience and occasion is crucial, as is captivating the audience and evoking emotion. Effective speeches utilize rhetorical devices, anecdotes, and a conversational tone. Structuring the speech with a compelling opener, clear points, and a strong conclusion is imperative. Additionally, employing persuasive language and maintaining simplicity are essential elements. The University of North Carolina’s writing center greatly emphasizes the importance of using these techniques.

The Importance of Speech Writing

Crafting a persuasive and impactful speech is essential for reaching your audience effectively. A well-crafted speech incorporates a central idea, main point, and a thesis statement to engage the audience. Whether it’s for a large audience or different ways of public speaking, good speech writing ensures that your message resonates with the audience. Incorporating engaging visual aids, an impactful introduction, and a strong start are key features of a compelling speech. Embracing these elements sets the stage for a successful speech delivery.

The Role of a Speech Writer

A speechwriter holds the responsibility of composing speeches for various occasions and specific points, employing a speechwriting process that includes audience analysis for both the United States and New York audiences. This written text is essential for delivering impactful and persuasive messages, often serving as a good start to a great speech. Utilizing NLP terms like ‘short sentences’ and ‘persuasion’ enhances the content’s quality and relevance.

Key Elements of Effective Speech Writing

Balancing shorter sentences with longer ones is essential for crafting an engaging speech. Including subordinate clauses and personal stories caters to the target audience and adds persuasion. The speechwriting process, including the thesis statement and a compelling introduction, ensures the content captures the audience’s attention. Effective speech writing involves research and the generation of new ideas. Toastmasters International and the Writing Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill provide valuable resources for honing English and verbal skills.

Clarity and Purpose of the Speech

Achieving clarity, authenticity, and empathy defines a good speech. Whether to persuade, inform, or entertain, the purpose of a speech is crucial. It involves crafting persuasive content with rich vocabulary and clear repetition. Successful speechwriting demands a thorough understanding of the audience and a compelling introduction. Balancing short and long sentences is essential for holding the audience’s attention. This process is a fusion of linguistics, psychology, and rhetoric, making it an art form with a powerful impact.

Identifying Target Audience

Tailoring the speechwriting process hinges on identifying the target audience. Their attention is integral to the persuasive content, requiring adaptation of the speechwriting process. A speechwriter conducts audience analysis to capture the audience’s attention, employing new york audience analysis methods. Ensuring a good introduction and adapting the writing process for the target audience are key features of a great speech. Effective speechwriters prioritize the audience’s attention to craft compelling and persuasive speeches.

Structuring Your Speech

The speechwriting process relies on a well-defined structure, crucial to both the speech’s content and the writing process. It encompasses a compelling introduction, an informative body, and a strong conclusion. This process serves as a foundation for effective speeches, guiding the speaker through a series of reasons and a persuasive speechwriting definition. Furthermore, the structure, coupled with audience analysis, is integral to delivering a great speech that resonates with the intended listeners.

The Process of Writing a Speech

Crafting a speech involves composing the opening line, developing key points, and ensuring a strong start. Effective speech writing follows a structured approach, incorporating rhetorical questions and a compelling introduction. A speechwriter’s process includes formulating a thesis statement, leveraging rhetorical questions, and establishing a good start. This process entails careful consideration of the audience, persuasive language, and engaging content. The University of North Carolina’s writing center emphasizes the significance of persuasion, clarity, and concise sentences in speechwriting.

Starting with a Compelling Opener

A speechwriting process commences with a captivating opening line and a strong introduction, incorporating the right words and rhetorical questions. The opening line serves as both an introduction and a persuasive speech, laying the foundation for a great speechwriting definition. Additionally, the structure of the speechwriting process, along with audience analysis, plays a crucial role in crafting an effective opening. Considering these elements is imperative when aiming to start a speech with a compelling opener.

Developing the Body of the Speech

Crafting the body of a speech involves conveying the main points with persuasion and precision. It’s essential to outline the speechwriting process, ensuring a clear and impactful message. The body serves as a structured series of reasons, guiding the audience through the content. Through the use of short sentences and clear language, the body of the speech engages the audience, maintaining their attention. Crafting the body involves the art of persuasion, using the power of words to deliver a compelling message.

Crafting a Strong Conclusion

Crafting a strong conclusion involves reflecting the main points of the speech and summarizing key ideas, leaving the audience with a memorable statement. It’s the final chance to leave a lasting impression and challenge the audience to take action or consider new perspectives. A good conclusion can make the speech memorable and impactful, using persuasion and English language effectively to drive the desired response from the audience. Toastmasters International emphasizes the importance of a strong conclusion in speechwriting for maximum impact.

Techniques for Engaging Speech Writing

Engage the audience’s attention using rhetorical questions. Create a connection through anecdotes and personal stories. Emphasize key points with rhetorical devices to capture the audience’s attention. Maintain interest by varying sentence structure and length. Use visual aids to complement the spoken word and enhance understanding. Incorporate NLP terms such as “short sentences,” “writing center,” and “persuasion” to create engaging and informative speech writing.

Keeping the Content Engaging

Captivating the audience’s attention requires a conversational tone, alliteration, and repetition for effect. A strong introduction sets the tone, while emotional appeals evoke responses. Resonating with the target audience ensures engagement. Utilize short sentences, incorporate persuasion, and vary sentence structure to maintain interest. Infuse the speech with NLP terms like “writing center”, “University of North Carolina”, and “Toastmasters International” to enhance its appeal. Engaging content captivates the audience and compels them to listen attentively.

Maintaining Simplicity and Clarity

To ensure clarity and impact, express ideas in short sentences. Use a series of reasons and specific points to effectively convey the main idea. Enhance the speech with the right words for clarity and comprehension. Simplify complex concepts by incorporating anecdotes and personal stories. Subordinate clauses can provide structure and clarity in the speechwriting process.

The Power of Nonverbal Communication

Nonverbal cues, such as body language and gestures, can add emphasis to your spoken words, enhancing the overall impact of your speech. By incorporating visual aids and handouts, you can further augment the audience’s understanding and retention of key points. Utilizing a conversational tone and appropriate body language is crucial for establishing a genuine connection with your audience. Visual aids and gestures not only aid comprehension but also help in creating a lasting impression, captivat**ing** the audience with compelling visual elements.

The Role of Audience Analysis in Speech Writing

Tailoring a speech to the audience’s needs is paramount. Demographics like age, gender, and cultural background must be considered. Understanding the audience’s interests and affiliation is crucial for delivering a resonating speech. Content should be tailored to specific audience points of interest, engaging and speaking to their concerns.

Understanding Audience Demographics

Understanding the varied demographics of the audience, including age and cultural diversity, is crucial. Adapting the speech content to resonate with a diverse audience involves tailoring it to the different ways audience members process and interpret information. This adaptation ensures that the speech can effectively engage with the audience, no matter their background or age. Recognizing the importance of understanding audience demographics is key for effective audience analysis. By considering these factors, the speech can be tailored to meet the needs and preferences of the audience, resulting in a more impactful delivery.

Considering the Audience Size and Affiliation

When tailoring a speech, consider the audience size and affiliation to influence the tone and content effectively. Adapt the speech content and delivery to resonate with a large audience and different occasions, addressing the specific points of the target audience’s affiliation. By delivering a speech tailored to the audience’s size and specific points of affiliation, you can ensure that your message is received and understood by all.

Time and Length Considerations in Speech Writing

Choosing the appropriate time for your speech and determining its ideal length are crucial factors influenced by the purpose and audience demographics. Tailoring the speech’s content and structure for different occasions ensures relevance and impact. Adapting the speech to specific points and the audience’s demographics is key to its effectiveness. Understanding these time and length considerations allows for effective persuasion and engagement, catering to the audience’s diverse processing styles.

Choosing the Right Time for Your Speech

Selecting the optimal start and opening line is crucial for capturing the audience’s attention right from the beginning. It’s essential to consider the timing and the audience’s focus to deliver a compelling and persuasive speech. The right choice of opening line and attention to the audience set the tone for the speech, influencing the emotional response. A good introduction and opening line not only captivate the audience but also establish the desired tone for the speech.

Determining the Ideal Length of Your Speech

When deciding the ideal length of your speech, it’s crucial to tailor it to your specific points and purpose. Consider the attention span of your audience and the nature of the event. Engage in audience analysis to understand the right words and structure for your speech. Ensure that the length is appropriate for the occasion and target audience. By assessing these factors, you can structure your speech effectively and deliver it with confidence and persuasion.

How to Practice and Rehearse Your Speech

Incorporating rhetorical questions and anecdotes can deeply engage your audience, evoking an emotional response that resonates. Utilize visual aids, alliteration, and repetition to enhance your speech and captivate the audience’s attention. Effective speechwriting techniques are essential for crafting a compelling introduction and persuasive main points. By practicing a conversational tone and prioritizing clarity, you establish authenticity and empathy with your audience. Develop a structured series of reasons and a solid thesis statement to ensure your speech truly resonates.

Techniques for Effective Speech Rehearsal

When practicing your speech, aim for clarity and emphasis by using purposeful repetition and shorter sentences. Connect with your audience by infusing personal stories and quotations to make your speech more relatable. Maximize the impact of your written speech when spoken by practicing subordinate clauses and shorter sentences. Focus on clarity and authenticity, rehearsing your content with a good introduction and a persuasive central idea. Employ rhetorical devices and a conversational tone, ensuring the right vocabulary and grammar.

How Can Speech Writing Improve Your Public Speaking Skills?

Enhancing your public speaking skills is possible through speech writing. By emphasizing key points and a clear thesis, you can capture the audience’s attention. Developing a strong start and central idea helps deliver effective speeches. Utilize speechwriting techniques and rhetorical devices to structure engaging speeches that connect with the audience. Focus on authenticity, empathy, and a conversational tone to improve your public speaking skills.

In conclusion, speech writing is an art that requires careful consideration of various elements such as clarity, audience analysis, and engagement. By understanding the importance of speech writing and the role of a speech writer, you can craft effective speeches that leave a lasting impact on your audience. Remember to start with a compelling opener, develop a strong body, and end with a memorable conclusion. Engaging techniques, simplicity, and nonverbal communication are key to keeping your audience captivated. Additionally, analyzing your audience demographics and considering time and length considerations are vital for a successful speech. Lastly, practicing and rehearsing your speech will help improve your public speaking skills and ensure a confident delivery.

Expert Tips for Choosing Good Speech Topics

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what is the first stage in speech writing

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Sentence Sense Newsletter

The Writing Center • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

What this handout is about

This handout will help you create an effective speech by establishing the purpose of your speech and making it easily understandable. It will also help you to analyze your audience and keep the audience interested.

What’s different about a speech?

Writing for public speaking isn’t so different from other types of writing. You want to engage your audience’s attention, convey your ideas in a logical manner and use reliable evidence to support your point. But the conditions for public speaking favor some writing qualities over others. When you write a speech, your audience is made up of listeners. They have only one chance to comprehend the information as you read it, so your speech must be well-organized and easily understood. In addition, the content of the speech and your delivery must fit the audience.

What’s your purpose?

People have gathered to hear you speak on a specific issue, and they expect to get something out of it immediately. And you, the speaker, hope to have an immediate effect on your audience. The purpose of your speech is to get the response you want. Most speeches invite audiences to react in one of three ways: feeling, thinking, or acting. For example, eulogies encourage emotional response from the audience; college lectures stimulate listeners to think about a topic from a different perspective; protest speeches in the Pit recommend actions the audience can take.

As you establish your purpose, ask yourself these questions:

  • What do you want the audience to learn or do?
  • If you are making an argument, why do you want them to agree with you?
  • If they already agree with you, why are you giving the speech?
  • How can your audience benefit from what you have to say?

Audience analysis

If your purpose is to get a certain response from your audience, you must consider who they are (or who you’re pretending they are). If you can identify ways to connect with your listeners, you can make your speech interesting and useful.

As you think of ways to appeal to your audience, ask yourself:

  • What do they have in common? Age? Interests? Ethnicity? Gender?
  • Do they know as much about your topic as you, or will you be introducing them to new ideas?
  • Why are these people listening to you? What are they looking for?
  • What level of detail will be effective for them?
  • What tone will be most effective in conveying your message?
  • What might offend or alienate them?

For more help, see our handout on audience .

Creating an effective introduction

Get their attention, otherwise known as “the hook”.

Think about how you can relate to these listeners and get them to relate to you or your topic. Appealing to your audience on a personal level captures their attention and concern, increasing the chances of a successful speech. Speakers often begin with anecdotes to hook their audience’s attention. Other methods include presenting shocking statistics, asking direct questions of the audience, or enlisting audience participation.

Establish context and/or motive

Explain why your topic is important. Consider your purpose and how you came to speak to this audience. You may also want to connect the material to related or larger issues as well, especially those that may be important to your audience.

Get to the point

Tell your listeners your thesis right away and explain how you will support it. Don’t spend as much time developing your introductory paragraph and leading up to the thesis statement as you would in a research paper for a course. Moving from the intro into the body of the speech quickly will help keep your audience interested. You may be tempted to create suspense by keeping the audience guessing about your thesis until the end, then springing the implications of your discussion on them. But if you do so, they will most likely become bored or confused.

For more help, see our handout on introductions .

Making your speech easy to understand

Repeat crucial points and buzzwords.

Especially in longer speeches, it’s a good idea to keep reminding your audience of the main points you’ve made. For example, you could link an earlier main point or key term as you transition into or wrap up a new point. You could also address the relationship between earlier points and new points through discussion within a body paragraph. Using buzzwords or key terms throughout your paper is also a good idea. If your thesis says you’re going to expose unethical behavior of medical insurance companies, make sure the use of “ethics” recurs instead of switching to “immoral” or simply “wrong.” Repetition of key terms makes it easier for your audience to take in and connect information.

Incorporate previews and summaries into the speech

For example:

“I’m here today to talk to you about three issues that threaten our educational system: First, … Second, … Third,”

“I’ve talked to you today about such and such.”

These kinds of verbal cues permit the people in the audience to put together the pieces of your speech without thinking too hard, so they can spend more time paying attention to its content.

Use especially strong transitions

This will help your listeners see how new information relates to what they’ve heard so far. If you set up a counterargument in one paragraph so you can demolish it in the next, begin the demolition by saying something like,

“But this argument makes no sense when you consider that . . . .”

If you’re providing additional information to support your main point, you could say,

“Another fact that supports my main point is . . . .”

Helping your audience listen

Rely on shorter, simpler sentence structures.

Don’t get too complicated when you’re asking an audience to remember everything you say. Avoid using too many subordinate clauses, and place subjects and verbs close together.

Too complicated:

The product, which was invented in 1908 by Orville Z. McGillicuddy in Des Moines, Iowa, and which was on store shelves approximately one year later, still sells well.

Easier to understand:

Orville Z. McGillicuddy invented the product in 1908 and introduced it into stores shortly afterward. Almost a century later, the product still sells well.

Limit pronoun use

Listeners may have a hard time remembering or figuring out what “it,” “they,” or “this” refers to. Be specific by using a key noun instead of unclear pronouns.

Pronoun problem:

The U.S. government has failed to protect us from the scourge of so-called reality television, which exploits sex, violence, and petty conflict, and calls it human nature. This cannot continue.

Why the last sentence is unclear: “This” what? The government’s failure? Reality TV? Human nature?

More specific:

The U.S. government has failed to protect us from the scourge of so-called reality television, which exploits sex, violence, and petty conflict, and calls it human nature. This failure cannot continue.

Keeping audience interest

Incorporate the rhetorical strategies of ethos, pathos, and logos.

When arguing a point, using ethos, pathos, and logos can help convince your audience to believe you and make your argument stronger. Ethos refers to an appeal to your audience by establishing your authenticity and trustworthiness as a speaker. If you employ pathos, you appeal to your audience’s emotions. Using logos includes the support of hard facts, statistics, and logical argumentation. The most effective speeches usually present a combination these rhetorical strategies.

Use statistics and quotations sparingly

Include only the most striking factual material to support your perspective, things that would likely stick in the listeners’ minds long after you’ve finished speaking. Otherwise, you run the risk of overwhelming your listeners with too much information.

Watch your tone

Be careful not to talk over the heads of your audience. On the other hand, don’t be condescending either. And as for grabbing their attention, yelling, cursing, using inappropriate humor, or brandishing a potentially offensive prop (say, autopsy photos) will only make the audience tune you out.

Creating an effective conclusion

Restate your main points, but don’t repeat them.

“I asked earlier why we should care about the rain forest. Now I hope it’s clear that . . .” “Remember how Mrs. Smith couldn’t afford her prescriptions? Under our plan, . . .”

Call to action

Speeches often close with an appeal to the audience to take action based on their new knowledge or understanding. If you do this, be sure the action you recommend is specific and realistic. For example, although your audience may not be able to affect foreign policy directly, they can vote or work for candidates whose foreign policy views they support. Relating the purpose of your speech to their lives not only creates a connection with your audience, but also reiterates the importance of your topic to them in particular or “the bigger picture.”

Practicing for effective presentation

Once you’ve completed a draft, read your speech to a friend or in front of a mirror. When you’ve finished reading, ask the following questions:

  • Which pieces of information are clearest?
  • Where did I connect with the audience?
  • Where might listeners lose the thread of my argument or description?
  • Where might listeners become bored?
  • Where did I have trouble speaking clearly and/or emphatically?
  • Did I stay within my time limit?

Other resources

  • Toastmasters International is a nonprofit group that provides communication and leadership training.
  • Allyn & Bacon Publishing’s Essence of Public Speaking Series is an extensive treatment of speech writing and delivery, including books on using humor, motivating your audience, word choice and presentation.

Works consulted

We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.

Boone, Louis E., David L. Kurtz, and Judy R. Block. 1997. Contemporary Business Communication . Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Ehrlich, Henry. 1994. Writing Effective Speeches . New York: Marlowe.

Lamb, Sandra E. 1998. How to Write It: A Complete Guide to Everything You’ll Ever Write . Berkeley: Ten Speed Press.

You may reproduce it for non-commercial use if you use the entire handout and attribute the source: The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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The General Steps in the Speechwriting Process

  • First Online: 15 March 2019

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what is the first stage in speech writing

  • Jens E. Kjeldsen 7 ,
  • Amos Kiewe 8 ,
  • Marie Lund 9 &
  • Jette Barnholdt Hansen  

Part of the book series: Rhetoric, Politics and Society ((RPS))

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In this chapter, we outline the general steps speechwriters ought to follow in the process of writing speeches for others. These guidelines are flexible and allow for comfortable adaptation given the varied implementation of speechwriting practices as well as the different approaches in the European and American systems. Our model follows the classical perspective that focuses on topic selection, the speaker-speechwriter negotiation of rhetorical constraints of context and audience as well as determining the fitting style and delivery. The chapter also develops a master rhetorical plan that can be used as a prompt or an outline for speechwriters when drafting a speech, covering the key variables of speech, situation, audience, and a suitable mode of communication.

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Kjeldsen, J.E., Kiewe, A., Lund, M., Barnholdt Hansen, J. (2019). The General Steps in the Speechwriting Process. In: Speechwriting in Theory and Practice. Rhetoric, Politics and Society. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-03685-0_13

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Table of Contents

Ai, ethics & human agency, collaboration, information literacy, writing process, the ultimate blueprint: a research-driven deep dive into the 13 steps of the writing process.

  • © 2023 by Joseph M. Moxley - University of South Florida

This article provides a comprehensive, research-based introduction to the major steps , or strategies , that writers work through as they endeavor to communicate with audiences . Since the 1960s, the writing process has been defined to be a series of steps , stages, or strategies. Most simply, the writing process is conceptualized as four major steps: prewriting , drafting , revising , editing . That model works really well for many occasions. Yet sometimes you'll face really challenging writing tasks that will force you to engage in additional steps, including, prewriting , inventing , drafting , collaborating , researching , planning , organizing , designing , rereading , revising , editing , proofreading , sharing or publishing . Expand your composing repertoire -- your ability to respond with authority , clarity , and persuasiveness -- by learning about the dispositions and strategies of successful, professional writers.

what is the first stage in speech writing

Like water cascading to the sea, flow feels inevitable, natural, purposeful. Yet achieving flow is a state of mind that can be difficult to achieve. It requires full commitment to the believing gam e (as opposed to the doubting game ).

What are the Steps of the Writing Process?

Since the 1960s, it has been popular to describe the writing process as a series of steps or stages . For simple projects, the writing process is typically defined as four major steps:

  • drafting  

This simplified approach to writing is quite appropriate for many exigencies–many calls to write . Often, e.g., we might read an email quickly, write a response, and then send it: write, revise, send.

However, in the real world, for more demanding projects — especially in high-stakes workplace writing or academic writing at the high school and college level — the writing process involve additional  steps,  or  strategies , such as 

  • collaboration
  • researching
  • proofreading
  • sharing or publishing.  

Related Concepts: Mindset ; Self Regulation

Summary – Writing Process Steps

The summary below outlines the major steps writers work through as they endeavor to develop an idea for an audience .

1. Prewriting

Prewriting refers to all the work a writer does on a writing project before they actually begin writing .

Acts of prewriting include

  • Prior to writing a first draft, analyze the context for the work. For instance, in school settings students may analyze how much of their grade will be determined by a particular assignment. They may question how many and what sources are required and what the grading criteria will be used for critiquing the work.
  • To further their understanding of the assignment, writers will question who the audience is for their work, what their purpose is for writing, what style of writing their audience expects them to employ, and what rhetorical stance is appropriate for them to develop given the rhetorical situation they are addressing. (See the document planner heuristic for more on this)
  • consider employing rhetorical appeals ( ethos , pathos , and logos ), rhetorical devices , and rhetorical modes they want to develop once they begin writing
  • reflect on the voice , tone , and persona they want to develop
  • Following rhetorical analysis and rhetorical reasoning , writers decide on the persona ; point of view ; tone , voice and style of writing they hope to develop, such as an academic writing prose style or a professional writing prose style
  • making a plan, an outline, for what to do next.

2. Invention

Invention is traditionally defined as an initial stage of the writing process when writers are more focused on discovery and creative play. During the early stages of a project, writers brainstorm; they explore various topics and perspectives before committing to a specific direction for their discourse .

In practice, invention can be an ongoing concern throughout the writing process. People who are focused on solving problems and developing original ideas, arguments , artifacts, products, services, applications, and  texts are open to acts of invention at any time during the writing process.

Writers have many different ways to engage in acts of invention, including

  • What is the exigency, the call to write ?
  • What are the ongoing scholarly debates in the peer-review literature?
  • What is the problem ?
  • What do they read? watch? say? What do they know about the topic? Why do they believe what they do? What are their beliefs, values, and expectations ?
  • What rhetorical appeals — ethos (credibility) , pathos (emotion) , and logos (logic) — should I explore to develop the best response to this exigency , this call to write?
  • What does peer-reviewed research say about the subject?
  • What are the current debates about the subject?
  • Embrace multiple viewpoints and consider various approaches to encourage the generation of original ideas.
  • How can I experiment with different media , genres , writing styles , personas , voices , tone
  • Experiment with new research methods
  • Write whatever ideas occur to you. Focus on generating ideas as opposed to writing grammatically correct sentences. Get your thoughts down as fully and quickly as you can without critiquing them.
  • Use heuristics to inspire discovery and creative thinking: Burke’s Pentad ; Document Planner , Journalistic Questions , The Business Model Canvas
  • Embrace the uncertainty that comes with creative exploration.
  • Listen to your intuition — your felt sense — when composing
  • Experiment with different writing styles , genres , writing tools, and rhetorical stances
  • Play the believing game early in the writing process

3. Researching

Research refers to systematic investigations that investigators carry out to discover new  knowledge , test knowledge claims , solve  problems , or develop new texts , products, apps, and services.

During the research stage of the writing process, writers may engage in

  • Engage in customer discovery interviews and  survey research  in order to better understand the  problem space . Use  surveys , interviews, focus groups, etc., to understand the stakeholder’s s (e.g., clients, suppliers, partners) problems and needs
  • What can you recall from your memory about the subject?
  • What can you learn from informal observation?
  • What can you learn from strategic searching of the archive on the topic that interests you?
  • Who are the thought leaders?
  • What were the major turns to the conversation ?
  • What are the current debates on the topic ?
  • Mixed research methods , qualitative research methods , quantitative research methods , usability and user experience research ?
  • What citation style is required by the audience and discourse community you’re addressing? APA | MLA .

4. Collaboration

Collaboration  refers to the act of working with others to exchange ideas, solve problems, investigate subjects ,  coauthor   texts , and develop products and services.

Collaboration can play a major role in the writing process, especially when authors coauthor documents with peers and teams , or critique the works of others .

Acts of collaboration include

  • Paying close attention to what others are saying, acknowledging their input, and asking clarifying questions to ensure understanding.
  • Expressing ideas, thoughts, and opinions in a concise and understandable manner, both verbally and in writing.
  • Being receptive to new ideas and perspectives, and considering alternative approaches to problem-solving.
  • Adapting to changes in project goals, timelines, or team dynamics, and being willing to modify plans when needed.
  • Distributing tasks and responsibilities fairly among team members, and holding oneself accountable for assigned work.
  • valuing and appreciating the unique backgrounds, skills, and perspectives of all team members, and leveraging this diversity to enhance collaboration.
  • Addressing disagreements or conflicts constructively and diplomatically, working towards mutually beneficial solutions.
  • Providing constructive feedback to help others improve their work, and being open to receiving feedback to refine one’s own ideas and contributions.
  • Understanding and responding to the emotions, needs, and concerns of team members, and fostering a supportive and inclusive environment .
  • Acknowledging and appreciating the achievements of the team and individual members, and using successes as a foundation for continued collaboration and growth.

5. Planning

Planning refers to

  • the process of planning how to organize a document
  • the process of managing your writing processes

6. Organizing

Following rhetorical analysis , following prewriting , writers question how they should organize their texts. For instance, should they adopt the organizational strategies of academic discourse or workplace-writing discourse ?

Writing-Process Plans

  • What is your Purpose? – Aims of Discourse
  • What steps, or strategies, need to be completed next?
  • set a schedule to complete goals

Planning Exercises

  • Document Planner
  • Team Charter

7. Designing

Designing refers to efforts on the part of the writer

  • to leverage the power of visual language to convey meaning
  • to create a visually appealing text

During the designing stage of the writing process, writers explore how they can use the  elements of design  and  visual language to signify , clarify , and simplify the message.

Examples of the designing step of the writing process:

  • Establishing a clear hierarchy of visual elements, such as headings, subheadings, and bullet points, to guide the reader’s attention and facilitate understanding.
  • Selecting appropriate fonts, sizes, and styles to ensure readability and convey the intended tone and emphasis.
  • Organizing text and visual elements on the page or screen in a manner that is visually appealing, easy to navigate, and supports the intended message.
  • Using color schemes and contrasts effectively to create a visually engaging experience, while also ensuring readability and accessibility for all readers.
  • Incorporating images, illustrations, charts, graphs, and videos to support and enrich the written content, and to convey complex ideas in a more accessible format.
  • Designing content that is easily accessible to a wide range of readers, including those with visual impairments, by adhering to accessibility guidelines and best practices.
  • Maintaining a consistent style and design throughout the text, which includes the use of visuals, formatting, and typography, to create a cohesive and professional appearance.
  • Integrating interactive elements, such as hyperlinks, buttons, and multimedia, to encourage reader engagement and foster deeper understanding of the content.

8. Drafting

Drafting refers to the act of writing a preliminary version of a document — a sloppy first draft. Writers engage in exploratory writing early in the writing process. During drafting, writers focus on freewriting: they write in short bursts of writing without stopping and without concern for grammatical correctness or stylistic matters.

When composing, writers move back and forth between drafting new material, revising drafts, and other steps in the writing process.

9. Rereading

Rereading refers to the process of carefully reviewing a written text. When writers reread texts, they look in between each word, phrase, sentence, paragraph. They look for gaps in content, reasoning, organization, design, diction, style–and more.

When engaged in the physical act of writing — during moments of composing — writers will often pause from drafting to reread what they wrote or to reread some other text they are referencing.

10. Revising

Revision  — the process of revisiting, rethinking, and refining written work to improve its  content ,  clarity  and overall effectiveness — is such an important part of  the writing process  that experienced writers often say  “writing is revision” or “all writing is revision.”  

For many writers, revision processes are deeply intertwined with writing, invention, and reasoning strategies:

  • “Writing and rewriting are a constant search for what one is saying.” — John Updike
  • “How do I know what I think until I see what I say.” — E.M. Forster

Acts of revision include

  • Pivoting: trashing earlier work and moving in a new direction
  • Identifying Rhetorical Problems
  • Identifying Structural Problems
  • Identifying Language Problems
  • Identifying Critical & Analytical Thinking Problems

11. Editing

Editing  refers to the act of  critically reviewing  a  text  with the goal of identifying and rectifying sentence and word-level problems.

When  editing , writers tend to focus on  local concerns  as opposed to  global concerns . For instance, they may look for

  • problems weaving sources into your argument or analysis
  • problems establishing  the authority of sources
  • problems using the required  citation style
  • mechanical errors  ( capitalization ,  punctuation ,  spelling )
  • sentence errors ,  sentence structure errors
  • problems with  diction ,  brevity ,  clarity ,  flow ,  inclusivity , register, and  simplicity

12. Proofreading

Proofreading refers to last time you’ll look at a document before sharing or publishing the work with its intended audience(s). At this point in the writing process, it’s too late to add in some new evidence you’ve found to support your position. Now you don’t want to add any new content. Instead, your goal during proofreading is to do a final check on word-level errors, problems with diction , punctuation , or syntax.

13. Sharing or Publishing

Sharing refers to the last step in the writing process: the moment when the writer delivers the message — the text — to the target audience .

Writers may think it makes sense to wait to share their work later in the process, after the project is fairly complete. However, that’s not always the case. Sometimes you can save yourself a lot of trouble by bringing in collaborators and critics earlier in the writing process.

Doherty, M. (2016, September 4). 10 things you need to know about banyan trees. Under the Banyan. https://underthebanyan.blog/2016/09/04/10-things-you-need-to-know-about-banyan-trees/

Emig, J. (1967). On teaching composition: Some hypotheses as definitions. Research in The Teaching of English, 1(2), 127-135. Retrieved from http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED022783.pdf

Emig, J. (1971). The composing processes of twelfth graders (Research Report No. 13). Urbana, IL: National Council of Teachers of English.

Emig, J. (1983). The web of meaning: Essays on writing, teaching, learning and thinking. Upper Montclair, NJ: Boynton/Cook Publishers, Inc.

Ghiselin, B. (Ed.). (1985). The Creative Process: Reflections on the Invention in the Arts and Sciences . University of California Press.

Hayes, J. R., & Flower, L. (1980). Identifying the Organization of Writing Processes. In L. W. Gregg, & E. R. Steinberg (Eds.), Cognitive Processes in Writing: An Interdisciplinary Approach (pp. 3-30). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.  

Hayes, J. R. (2012). Modeling and remodeling writing. Written Communication, 29(3), 369-388. https://doi: 10.1177/0741088312451260

Hayes, J. R., & Flower, L. S. (1986). Writing research and the writer. American Psychologist, 41(10), 1106-1113. https://doi.org/10.1037/0003-066X.41.10.1106

Leijten, Van Waes, L., Schriver, K., & Hayes, J. R. (2014). Writing in the workplace: Constructing documents using multiple digital sources. Journal of Writing Research, 5(3), 285–337. https://doi.org/10.17239/jowr-2014.05.03.3

Lundstrom, K., Babcock, R. D., & McAlister, K. (2023). Collaboration in writing: Examining the role of experience in successful team writing projects. Journal of Writing Research, 15(1), 89-115. https://doi.org/10.17239/jowr-2023.15.01.05

National Research Council. (2012). Education for Life and Work: Developing Transferable Knowledge and Skills in the 21st Century . Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.https://doi.org/10.17226/13398.

North, S. M. (1987). The making of knowledge in composition: Portrait of an emerging field. Boynton/Cook Publishers.

Murray, Donald M. (1980). Writing as process: How writing finds its own meaning. In Timothy R. Donovan & Ben McClelland (Eds.), Eight approaches to teaching composition (pp. 3–20). National Council of Teachers of English.

Murray, Donald M. (1972). “Teach Writing as a Process Not Product.” The Leaflet, 11-14

Perry, S. K. (1996).  When time stops: How creative writers experience entry into the flow state  (Order No. 9805789). Available from ProQuest Dissertations & Theses A&I; ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global. (304288035). https://www.proquest.com/dissertations-theses/when-time-stops-how-creative-writers-experience/docview/304288035/se-2

Rohman, D.G., & Wlecke, A. O. (1964). Pre-writing: The construction and application of models for concept formation in writing (Cooperative Research Project No. 2174). East Lansing, MI: Michigan State University.

Rohman, D. G., & Wlecke, A. O. (1975). Pre-writing: The construction and application of models for concept formation in writing (Cooperative Research Project No. 2174). U.S. Office of Education, Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

Sommers, N. (1980). Revision Strategies of Student Writers and Experienced Adult Writers. College Composition and Communication, 31(4), 378-388. doi: 10.2307/356600

Brevity - Say More with Less

Brevity - Say More with Less

Clarity (in Speech and Writing)

Clarity (in Speech and Writing)

Coherence - How to Achieve Coherence in Writing

Coherence - How to Achieve Coherence in Writing

Diction

Flow - How to Create Flow in Writing

Inclusivity - Inclusive Language

Inclusivity - Inclusive Language

Simplicity

The Elements of Style - The DNA of Powerful Writing

Unity

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The five stages of speech preparation

speech sanders

Frequent public speakers know that there are five stages of readiness for giving a speech. The trick is not to reach stage 3 and then imagine that you’re done.

Stage 1: The idea

What you have: A concept of what you what you want to say, and in what order. Some stories to tell. A theme.

What you need: Exactly the right stuff, in exactly the right order.

How to get there: Write it down, share it, or blog it. Get feedback. Tell the story to people informally and see how they react.

Stage 2: The images

What you have: Exactly the right images in exactly the right order.

What you need: The voiceover that goes with the images.

How to get there: Write down a bunch of speaker notes. Rehearse it. See how it goes together.

Stage 3: The confidence

What you have: The script that goes with the images.

What you need: Enough familiarity that you know exactly what’s about to come up each time you press the advance button.

How to get there: Practice. A lot. Preferably with some captive, friendly audiences, like your coworkers.

Stage 4: The emotion

What you have: The ability to give the speech, flawlessly, like a robot.

What you need: The ability to win over an audience.

How to get there: Start figuring out how to modulate your voice to tell the story — when to be fast, when slow, when loud, when soft, when to move and where on stage.

Stage 5: The brilliance

What you have: The ability not just to give the speech, but to perform it.

What you need: To find the soul of the speech and riff on it, constantly improving what’s good to make it incredible.

How to get there: Perform the speech. A lot. Get so comfortable that you can ad-lib.

The cool thing is when you know the content so well that one part of your mind can perform it, while the other observes and determines what moves to make next.

Is this what it’s like to act? To play music? To dance? I don’t know, I don’t do those things, but I’d like to hear from people who do.

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Years ago, when I joined my first Toastmaster’s Club, they handed me a videotape and told me that my first 10 speeches would be recorded for my own use. I would run home after giving a speech, and pop my cassette into the VCR. I’d hit rewind and watch my speech fast- backwards, with no sound. My sweeping gestures weren’t sweeping — I looked like a baby bird trying to fly — elbows glued to my side. When I listened to the video with sound, I caught all the noises one makes to fill silences (ah, um, so, and, then…). We are our own worst critics, but that’s how we improve. I learned to divide a talk into chunks and practice the transitions. I began to keep some segments “in my pocket”– ready to be tossed out or added in as time allowed. I subscribe to Craig Valentine (online speech coach) and enjoy his advanced tips delivered in bite-sized chunks with lots of humor. Learning to speak in front of an audience is a true skill, worthy of honing.

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Speech Writing Tips: 27 Key Tips from Seasoned Pros

Speech Writing Tips: 27 Key Tips from Seasoned Pros

  • Filed under: Featured articles , Public speaking articles , Public speaking tips and tricks , Speaking tips

Whether it’s your first speech or your hundredth, you might be feeling the anxiety build as you stare at a blank page. You need to wow your audience, but you’re not sure how. It can be stressful to create a moving speech from nothing, but you’re not alone. Below, I’ve compiled a killer list of speech writing tips from seasoned pros.

So, what are the best speech writing tips to remember? Choose the right topic for your audience, which is based on their interests and needs. To make your speech more interesting, avoid jargon, and use personal stories and humor in your speech. Make your transitions from subtopic to another smooth, natural, and flawless.

By the end of this article, you’ll know how to write an awesome speech from start to finish. So, let’s not waste another moment!

Table of Contents

Speech Writing Tips: The Audience

Before you begin writing your speech , you need to consider several factors about your audience. Without taking these points into consideration, your speech will fall flat or may even offend your audience, so don’t rush past this part.

#1 Who is my audience for this speech?

This is the first and most important question you need to ask yourself. The answer will dictate the path your speech should take. This first tip has everything to do with the people you’re talking to and nothing at all to do with you.

Why does your audience even matter? Isn’t your speech all about you?

No! If a speech needs to touch an audience, move them, or inspire them, the speaker needs to recognize the audience and adapt to them. Your job, before any other, is to figure out who your audience is and then write your speech around their needs and expectations.

For example, if your audience is a room full of young mothers at a convention aimed at small crafting businesses, you don’t want to come at them with a bunch of sports metaphors. That’s not to say they won’t understand or appreciate one of those thrown in for contrast and a new twist. However, it’s safe to assume they’d rather hear crafting anecdotes or small business stories instead of quips about the latest sports news.

On the flip side, if you’re speaking to a room full of lawyers on a retreat intended to relax and entertain them, you wouldn’t want to fill your speech with depressing cases and stories of judicial frustration. More on that in a moment though.

The bottom line is that you need to gauge who your audience is before you write a single word.

#2 Why is my audience here?

I touched on this briefly a moment ago, but I want to dig into it a bit deeper to drive my point home. Knowing who your audience is, is only half the equation. Understanding why they are there is the other half.

The “why” matters almost as much and who they are. For example, if the audience is there because it’s required, they may come into the speech feeling hostile and tense. A hostile audience is a closed-off audience; they’ll need to be handled with care.

If the audience has paid to be there, on the other hand, they are more likely to be receptive and open right from the start.

So, why are they there?

  • Is their attendance voluntary or compulsory?

#3 What does the audience want from my speech?

You know who you’ll be speaking to and why they are there. Now, you just need to figure out what they want from your speech. If you know what they want to walk away with, you can deliver it.

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In my previous examples, we saw mothers at a convention for small crafting business owners, and we saw a bunch of lawyers on a relaxing retreat. Each of those groups will be at their events for a specific reason, and you need to know what that reason is.

They are both groups of professionals, but they each have very different expectations for your speeches. One group expects to learn from you or be inspired. The other group wants to be entertained.

How you handle these two situations should be based on their needs. So, what do they want to get out of your speech ?

  • Are they there to learn?
  • Are they there to be inspired?
  • Do they want to be entertained?
  • Do they want to be challenged?
  • What do they hope to gain from your speech?
  • Why is this topic important to this particular audience?

Remember, this isn’t about what you want them to get out of it; it’s about their needs and expectations. Your job is to make sure your words resonate with them, and that won’t happen if you don’t understand what they need.

How do I utilize these speech writing tips for my audience?

So, now you know who your audience is, why they are there, and what they expect from you. But what do you do with all this information?

#4 Research demographics

Jump online and research your audience’s specific demographics. Important factors may include:

  • Political affiliations

#5 Be informed about the industry

Pay attention to current trends in their industries as well as past ones. Doing some research now can help your speech writing process in the long run, so take the time to dig deep.

#6 Understand the mission

Every event has a mission. Speak to the event organizers to get a better feel for the main mission of this event. This is a good time to ask more questions about the attendees, too.

#7 Check out the venue

Look up the venue and speak to the people in charge. Organizers often choose venues that are friendly to their causes or already have a good reputation in their circles.

#8 Research other speakers

It helps to look at past speakers for the group and how they were received. It’s also very helpful to do some research on fellow speakers at this particular event, if there are any.

Speech Writing Tips for Choosing A Topic

Though you will likely have instructions for the general theme of your speaking engagement, the specific topic will be up to you. Choosing the right topic for your audience and their needs can be a stressful part of writing a speech.

Choosing the wrong topic can make your speech a nightmare for you and your audience. So how do you choose the right speech topic for your audience? Using the previous speech writing tips to get to know your audience, you should already have some ideas about topics of interest to that group.

Just in case you’re still stumped, here are some more speech writing tips for choosing a topic.

#9 Explore relevant speech topics

While researching your audience, the event, and the venue, you probably stumbled across interesting tidbits of information about each. Use them. Even if they seem insignificant at first, everything is worth exploring at this stage.

Look at the bits of information floating around the group you’ll be speaking about. This can be something in the news, a hot topic on social media, or new legislation that could affect the group.

#10 Ask event coordinators for speech ideas

Event coordinators will have a clear picture of the event, the main focus, and the interest of the attendees. Ask the coordinator for suggestions on topics. They may be willing to share the list of topics already being discussed by other speakers, too.

Knowing what other people will be talking about can help you choose a smaller niche or expand on that topic. It can help you avoid redundancy, too.

#11 Ask social media for speech topics

Harness the power of social media by asking your followers what kinds of topics they’d like to explore. Even if these people won’t be in that audience, if they’re familiar with the main theme, they probably have an idea of what kind of speech they’d enjoy hearing.

Writing the Speech

You’ve done a lot of research, spoken to important people, and have a solid plan for impressing your audience. Now comes the hard part.

Getting your ideas and facts down onto paper can be frustrating and incredibly stressful. What will you say? How will the audience react? What if you don’t make sense?

These next tips can help you nail the writing process and produce your finest speech yet.

#12 Write your speech outline first

Outline your speech before you begin writing the words you’ll be speaking. This helps you stay on topic. It also gives you an opportunity to test out the flow of ideas and pacing.

If anything in your outline seems out of place, you have an opportunity at this point to make room for it, or just chuck it. Don’t hang onto stubborn bits past the outline stage. If it just won’t fit, don’t try to force it. You’ll only frustrate yourself. Save that bit for another speech.

#13 Write Your Speech Introduction Last

It may seem counterintuitive to write the beginning last, but hear me out.

Your speech introduction is one of the most important parts of your speech. This will set the tone for the entire speech. Sometimes, it’s hard to get past that first step and get to the meat of your speech because you aren’t entirely certain what your speech is about yet.

So, skip the intro and start working on the body first. You’ll edit that draft over and over, fine-tuning it to perfection. And once you’re done, you will know exactly what your speech is about.

That’s the point where you can nail your introduction, touching on a few key points, and getting your audience ready for the main event.

When you do begin your introduction, lay it out in a simple way. Introduce yourself, talk about your purpose, mention your key points briefly, and establish credibility so your audience can trust you. If you can add some humor at this point, that would help relax your audience, but only do so if it’s appropriate for the occasion.

Your speech introduction is your hook. This is the way you grab attention. Use this moment to engage the audience, too. Eye contact, body language, and asking questions right from start will draw attention.

But a good hook needs more than these tricks. You need to get attendees to want to stay and listen.

Some hooks include:

  • A puzzling question
  • Posing a dilemma
  • Or a combo of all of these

If you’re still stuck on introduction ideas, you can watch a few speeches from popular orators to get a feel for it.

#14 Use personal stories and humor in your speech

After your outline is done, look at your subtopics and choose a few to add personal stories too. It’s best to put personal anecdotes with the most important parts of your speech to help those aspects stand out. Adding a personal touch keeps audiences engaged and interested.

Don’t waste your anecdotes on minor points, unless they add something bigger than entertainment to the mix.

Make sure your anecdotes don’t pull focus from your topic. If people are too connected with your story, it could pull their attention away from the real point of your speech. There is a balancing act here.

Speech Writing Tips: 27 Key Tips from Seasoned Pros

#14 Use repetition when writing your speech

Humans are creatures of habit and routine. Both habits and routine come from the repetition of actions, thoughts, and words. Use that to your advantage when you write your next speech.

Pick a short phrase to repeat throughout your speech. It will trigger a subconscious reaction in your audience and help them pay attention. It will help them remember your points, too.

An example of repetition in a speech is Winston Churchill’s “We shall fight on the beaches; we shall fight on the landing ground” speech . Everyone knows and remembers most of it. It’s the repetition of “we shall fight” that made this speech memorable.

#15 Remember that your audience is not you

You were asked to make this speech because you’re an authority. Your job is to impart your knowledge or to entertain your audience, but you have to remember that they’re not you.

The attendees may be interested in your topic, but they don’t have the same knowledge you do ; that’s why you are up there talking and not them. So, this speech writing tip is here to remind you to be a teacher, a guide, and an authority.

Your audience is interested in what you have to say. They will want and need specifics, facts, sources, and information. It’s your job to give it to them. Though each person listening may have some knowledge on your topic, you need to be sure your words and points are clear to someone who might not know much at all.

#16 Don’t patronize or talk down to your audience

Yes, you’re an authority. People will be looking to you for guidance and information. However, you’re not their parent. You’re not above them or more important than they are. Be careful not to cross the line from friendly expert to overbearing know-it-all.

#17 Choose jargon carefully

You want to write and speak naturally, but using too much industry jargon can be just as bad as using none at all. Be sure to choose appropriate industry jargon sparingly, but not too little.

Jargon helps build your credibility, while too much makes you sound desperate.

#18 Nail your speech transitions

You’ll need to go from one subtopic to another in a smooth, natural, and flawless way . This can be a major sticking point for some people.

One of my favorite ways is to put an anecdote between two subtopics to help bridge the gap. Most personal stories have multiple meanings and lessons to be learned. Put an anecdote between two closely related subtopics to help.

You can also use the recap method to transition between subtopics. It’s as simple as saying, “We explored this and this, but let’s turn to this for a moment”, and then continue on. This works best with subtopics that are naturally close together.

#19 Write a great speech ending

Hey, no pressure, but you need to write an awesome speech ending. This is your chance to recap briefly, excite the audience, and add your call to action.

What did your audience want and need from your speech? What was the point of the entire thing? The ending of your speech is where you show your audience that you delivered exactly what they needed.

A call to action can be as simple as signing up for your mailing list or as complex as voting or buying something. Whatever it is, make it clear that your speech has been persuading enough to give the attendees what they need.

One major problem a lot of speeches have is that they wander. It’s a common mistake to let your speech meander back and forth over a variety of topics.

While it may make total sense to you as you write it and even practice it, you must remember that your audience will probably get lost with your ramblings or lose interest in what you have to say.

Here are some speech writing tips to keep your speeches focused.

#20 Keep a narrow focus for your speech

It’s exciting to get up in front of people and talk about your passions. The problem many speakers run into is the desire to cram too much information into a short span of time . This confuses audiences and muddies your point.

Instead of putting every idea into your speech like a blanket, think of your speech as a thread in a bigger tapestry. You aren’t there to show them the entire picture; you’re there to show them details on one important part.

If you stay focused and on topic, your audience will get more out of your speech than if you try to cover every possible point. Besides, if you stay focused now, you are more likely to be asked back for another speech on another part of your tapestry.

#21 Keep your speech simple

This speech writing tip isn’t as much about wowing your audience as it is to caution against too many of those tactics at once . It’s tempting to fill speeches with various “tricks of the trade” to keep attendees glued to their seats, but it can backfire.

If you keep your speech simple and to the point, listeners are more likely to remember what you said. That means they’ll get a lot more out of your speech than the generic memory of you being really fun to watch.

  • Use short sentences
  • Use simple language appropriate for the audience
  • Don’t ramble
  • Cut extraneous words that don’t add value

#22 Write your speech like you speak

Too many people ignore this speech writing tip—don’t be one of them! You need to write your speech like you speak. That means using everyday language and even colloquialisms where appropriate.

By keeping your speech natural, it’ll help you stay comfortable and confident, which then helps you stay on topic. Adding big words you don’t normally use will only distract you and your audience.

Speech Writing Tips: 27 Key Tips from Seasoned Pros

#23 Stick to the facts to write an impressive speech

Understandable, it’s easy to get sucked into the excitement of passionate topics. When people are excited about something, they tend to exaggerate. Since exaggeration is sometimes considered as one branch of lying , that tendency can get you in trouble when writing a speech.

Elaboration is one thing—and it’s a good thing to do in your speech—but it’s a slippery slope from elaboration to exaggeration. Be sure you can cite your sources at any given moment.

Stick to the facts and you won’t find yourself in front of an audience shaking their heads in disbelief. Even if your facts are wild, if you can back them up with sources, you’ll keep your audience listening.

#24 Try to sound normal

Another big issue speakers face is sounding unnatural. There is a stiffness or obvious discomfort to some speakers that can make the audience feel uncomfortable. Some of this is due to anxiety over public speaking, but some has to do with poor word choice while writing the speech.

These tips will help you write a more natural-sounding speech.

  • Use common terminology for the industry, but avoid difficult to pronounce words.
  • Ask questions to keep the audience engaged. Speakers and audiences are more comfortable when it feels like a conversation.
  • Laugh, smile, and gesture as if you were speaking to a friend. Obviously, you don’t want to laugh and smile if it’s a somber event, but use socially acceptable emotions and behaviors to keep yourself relaxed.
  • Be open, honest, and human. If you know you’ll be nervous, add it to your speech. Poorly veiled discomfort can infect audiences, too. Showing your vulnerability will help show your human side while setting the audience at ease. And writing it in the speech in advance can help alleviate some of the stress.
  • Write your speech with contractions. Say things like “I’m” instead of “I am” and “they’re” instead of “they are” to keep your tone friendly.

Practice Makes Perfect

You’ve researched, outlined, written, and edited your speech. Pat yourself on the back, but you’re not done yet.

#25 Read your speech out loud

Seeing the same words over and over on the page can start to muddle your brain. It’s a fact. The more you look at your speech, the less likely you are to see the mistakes .

The only real way to overcome this is to read your words out loud. You can do this alone or with a friend, but you must not skip this part of your preparation.

When you read your words out loud, your brain will often autocorrect your mistakes, just like it does while writing and editing silently. The difference this time is that your ears will now catch the mistake and give you the chance to fix it.

So, for example, if you’re reading your speech and your mouth says one thing while the paper says something else, you know there’s an issue. Stop, examine the problem, and make corrections.

If you continue to stumble over places in your speech where it is grammatically correct and is mistake-free, your brain is telling you there’s still a problem. Maybe it doesn’t sound as natural as you thought. Maybe it’s the wrong tone.

Whatever it is, your brain, eyes, and ears are trying to tell you there’s an issue. Don’t ignore these situations.

#26 Record your speech

If you can’t figure out what the problem is while reading aloud, record yourself. This can be audio or video; it doesn’t matter. Just record your speech and then replay it.

You may be able to spot the mistake by listening or watching. If you’re still stumped why it sounds odd, ask a friend or two to help.

#27 Time yourself

When your speech is done, you have one more job to do. Time yourself. It seems so simple and obvious, but many people forget this step.

Writing a speech is an arduous task sometimes, and once it’s done, you may feel great relief. But if you don’t time yourself giving your completed speech, you may find yourself on speech day talking too long or not long enough.

While timing, if you keep coming up short, try these tricks to lengthen the speech:

  • Add pauses for emphasis
  • Speak slower
  • Practice suitable gestures and body language
  • Add more content

If your speech is coming up too long, try these tips to shorten it:

  • Speak faster, but not too fast
  • Add more contractions
  • Remove extra sentences
  • Check for the bad kind of repetition or overstating facts
  • If all else fails, you may need to cut sections

These speech writing tips cover the planning, research, writing, and practice stages. No matter where you’re running into difficulties in writing your speech, there should be something here to help. And if you’re completely stumped or too nervous to even begin, just follow the steps in order.

I’m always looking for more tips and tricks to share with my readers. If you’ve developed your own processes and would like to share, I’d love to hear from you.

Related articles

Speech preparation: The important question of “What do i do if…” Speech preparation is vital, and the more thoroughly you do it, the greater the chance that your presentation will work out well. Also, it is wise to ask yourself a question “what you would do if…” (full article here)

33 tips to improve your presentation skills. This post will highlight 33 main presentation skills you should know and use in the future. Probably you will see that most of them are very simple to implement right away and don’t require elaborate action plans. (full article here)

How to speak with confidence in public? Accept the fact you’ll be nervous, but don’t let it control you. Prepare your speech or presentation well in advance. Practice in front of a variety of listeners. Learn controlled breathing. Act like you own the stage. (full article here)

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Janek Tuttar

Hi! My name is Janek Tuttar, and I am the founder and author of SpeakAndConquer.com.

I have been teaching and blogging about public speaking since spring 2007. Here, I am sharing the wisdom of how to cope in different public speaking situations.

Send me an e-mail: [email protected]

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  • How to plan a speech

Planning your speech

- a complete, unabridged guide with multiple examples to help plan a successful speech ☺.

By:  Susan Dugdale  | Last modified: 06-05-2023

Planning your speech is where your success begins. I do not jest! 

In your imagination you may hear yourself being stunning, the audience clapping wildly  as they rise to their feet to give you a standing ovation.

You may see yourself being deluged in red roses and offered several speaking contracts. Obviously, they are all lucrative but you choose the one with optional extras: an extended holiday in the South of France …

But first you have to begin at the beginning: planning your speech. Without a plan you are whistling in the wind, dreaming.

Vintage red rose wallpaper, happy woman with thought bubble. Text: Oh my goodness! They love my speech. They're throwing roses. I am absolutely fabulous. I wish.

What's on this page:

How to plan a speech step by step:

  • gathering the information to write your speech
  • brainstorming : what is a brainstorm, examples of brainstorms, getting started, with full step by step explanations and examples
  • how to shape material to fit an audience, the speech setting, and time allocation
  • an example speech outline
  • how and why to research
  • how to meet varying learning style needs: visual, auditory, and  kinesthetic
  • links to other useful pages: how to rehearse, make cue-cards...

Planning your speech from the start

A note about these notes.

These notes are general guidelines for ALL types of speeches. I know they are long.

(Actually that's an understatement! They are very long.)

I also know if you take the time to go through them they'll give you a solid introduction to thorough speech preparation.

They cover the basics of good presentation planning, research, writing and rehearsal: aspects you’ll want to consider regardless of the type of speech you’re giving.

Gathering your information

Once you have information about:

  • WHY you are going to speak (the purpose of your speech),
  • WHO you are going to speak to (your audience),
  • WHAT your general or specific subject matter is,
  • HOW long the speech is to be,
  • and WHERE it is...,

you are ready to make a rough or draft outline.

This will be your guide for writing.

You may alter the outline as you go along, as better or different ideas occur to you and that’s OK. It shows you’re flexible and thinking but before we can change anything we have to have something to start with.

To get to the outline stage in the speech planning process we first need to collect up all the "why", "who", "what", "when", "how", and "where" information needed. And that begins with a brainstorm * .

* What is a brainstorm?

A brainstorm is the name given to a commonly used, and effective, technique for generating lots of ideas on a topic, or theme, fast.

Using a heading as a prompt to get you thinking, you quickly note everything you can think of relating to it. You do not edit yourself.  You simply let the ideas flow until you can think of no more, making no judgements about whether it's a good idea, a silly idea, or a right or wrong one.

Ultimately, some will be more useful than others. You will sort through and order them later. However, the first step in the brainstorming process, is to accept everything you think of without hesitation. Stopping to decide what's OK and what's not breaks the flow.

If you'd like to see what a completed brainstorm looks like I have examples of them on my site. You'll see they provided the ideas that were then used to write the example speeches.

  • one for a maid of honor speech
  • one for a 50th wedding anniversary speech
  • and another for a farewell speech for a colleague

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Brainstorm to begin planning your speech

The brainstorm you are going to do is about making sure you thoroughly understand everything you possibly can about the speech you intend to give.

On a large piece of paper or in a word document write these headings with enough space between them for notes.   

WHY are you giving this speech?

What is the purpose of the speech? Do you intend to inspire? To motivate? To entertain? To inform? Or perhaps you want to combine several, like to inform, motivate and inspire?

Knowing what you want your audience to think, feel and do as a result of listening to your speech is the WHY underpinning your presentation. It will help guide what content you use and how you structure it.

WHO is your audience?

Write down as much as you know about the audience.

This will give you ideas about what they will want to hear and be interested in. It will also be your guide when it comes to shaping your material. (More about this later!)

For now, make notes covering:

  • the number of people expected to be in your audience,
  • their age group,
  • ethnicity, if appropriate,
  • and the common, or uniting factors they share,
  • and specific interests they may have.

Why is knowing who you're talking to vital?

Image - a row of stylized persons of varying colors, each with a glowing red heart. Text superimposed over image: Harmony

Find out more about why being in harmony with your audience is so important. Check out building rapport.

Examples of WHY, WHO, WHAT...brainstorm notes 

Image: Cartoon drawing of a smiling young woman. Text: Meet Martha Brown, entrepreneur, mother and wife.

Meet Martha Brown. She's fictional. I've made her, and the presentation she's preparing for up, to show you how the brainstorming part of the planning process works.

Martha's been asked to give a motivational speech to a group of women whose background is similar to her own. She, too, came from a family who struggled financially.

Today she is one of the few amongst her relatives who has maintained a marriage, raised children and has a successful business. Her small catering firm specializes in delivering beautifully presented gourmet meals and finger food on demand.

The organizer of the event wants her to share her life story as a guide or inspiration.

Martha is conscious of her good fortune but also knows the starting point, or the seed, lay within her. She desired the change of circumstances so much she enabled them to happen.

WHY is Martha giving this presentation?

What's the principal purpose behind Martha's speech? What does she want her audience to think, feel or do as a result of listening to her? 

Let's put ourselves in her shoes.

She wants to:

  • motivate and inspire her audience
  • give them hope 
  • show them there is a way out of the circumstances they find themselves in

WHO is Martha's audience?

These are Martha's notes covering the key points about her audience.

  • Approximately 25 people ( number )
  • Mostly mid to late 30s (age)
  • All women (gender)
  • Mixed ethnic background but all speak English (ethnicity)
  • City dwellers (uniting factor)
  • Mostly work inside the home (uniting factor)
  • Many have children (uniting factor)
  • Interested in achieving work/life balance for themselves and their families and in particular a better financial situation (interest/uniting factor)
  • All belong to the same church group (uniting factor)

WHAT are you going to talk about?

Write down the title and/or type of speech you have been asked to prepare. Now using your notes from the WHO section of your brainstorm, begin another set.

This time you are looking to see how WHAT you're going to talk about can be specifically shaped to meet and serve the interests of your audience.

Let's look at an example of WHAT

How does martha shape her life story to fit her audience.

She doesn't want to overwhelm them with information so they can’t think straight or digest it. That will turn them off.

They will think it’s too difficult and beyond them. They may listen, be interested, but they won’t  identify  with it.

She wants them to feel they can take from her experience and use it to enrich their own lives.

Her notes for WHAT may look like this:

  • S peech Title How to win a future for your family when the kids need feeding and the bills want paying.
  • Content - main points
  • I am like you – I get too busy to plan ahead, I have a tendency to deal with what or whoever squeals loudest, I get tired …
  • Before and after – life before I made the decision to start my own business – life after I made the decision. Comparisons – several examples.
  • The hardest part of making the decision and acting on it was … Examples.
  • The best part of making the decision … Examples. People who inspired me to act.
  • What I’ve learned in the process about my family, others and myself … Examples.
  • How I keep myself inspired … goal setting, listening and learning from others
  • The future – a possible way forward for you, the women in the audience listening.

It’s not a speech yet but you can see the beginnings of its shape and how she’s used her knowledge of the audience to ensure giving them something they’ll enjoy listening to and identify with.

How? (How long will I speak for? How will I deliver my speech?)

There are two important 'hows' to consider.

1. How long have I got to speak?

The first is HOW long have I got to speak.

The time allocation you have been given will determine what you put into your speech and what you will leave out.

If you have a relatively short time, 3-5 minutes, you will need to either focus on one major topic with examples to illustrate or settle for covering a maximum of three lightly.

The purpose of your speech and your audience will help you make the most relevant choice. A longer time gives you more freedom to develop several ideas/themes fully.

2. How will I deliver my presentation?

The second 'how' relates to the method of presentation. HOW will you deliver this speech?

For example:

  • Will this be a speech told with humor?
  • Will you have a 'show and tell'? (This is when you take objects relevant to your speech to illustrate your points. It could be photographs or other items if they are suitable to transport.)
  • Could you give a demonstration?

Shaping delivery to meet different learning styles

When you consider this 'how' bear in mind the different needs of your audience. Most people have a preferred mode for receiving information. That is their learning style.

Some people understand well through listening. They are called 'auditory'.

Some people get most of their understanding through looking. They are called 'visual'.

Others receive and understand information best when they can touch, feel or do what is being explained to them. These are the 'kinesthetics'.

Most of us have a preference for one or two modes. For instance, I am 'auditory' and 'visual'. I want to hear and see.  

A considerate speaker tries to include all three modes (learning styles) in their speech.

(For more on catering for learning styles with examples see the foot of the page.)

Delivery and time are yoked together

How you to choose to deliver your presentation is governed by the time you have available. If it is short, you may have to leave out a 'show and tell' or a demonstration but you will always be able to include something to meet all three modes satisfactorily.

'HOW' example from Martha's brainstorm notes 

Let’s return to Martha’s Notes to see what she does with the 'how' segment of her brainstorm.

How long? Time available = 10 minutes. (Maybe a little more but that depends on the rest of the agenda of the meeting and how well it flows. Could be some space for questions from the audience and answer.)

How to present? Definitely with humor! Also take some fliers, business cards and samples of finger food along. These can be available for people to pick up at the end of the presentation.

WHEN will this speech be given?

WHEN has two aspects you'll want to take into consideration.

The first is the actual date you have to have it ready for delivery. That lets you know how much time you have for preparation. Is it three weeks, six weeks, or two days?

You'll use that information to plan your workflow. For example, allocating yourself one week to get your preliminary outline and any research required, completed.   

The second aspect is the actual time of day and season you deliver a speech. This can have an impact on what you do and say.

For example: You can use an early bird start in the middle of winter on a wet Monday morning effectively by acknowledging the efforts people have made to be there, and by making sure the heaters are on and there's hot coffee available.

Finding ways of tying in what is happening in the 'here and now' is a good way to connect with your audience.

A word of warning : Be conscious about presenting difficult or challenging material when people are either both tired and hungry (just before lunch or dinner) or when they’ve just eaten! Concentration spans are not at their best in either situation. If possible save this type of content for a mid-morning or afternoon slot.

Martha’s Notes, WHEN:  2.45pm, Wednesday, 2nd August – Summer heat

WHERE will this presentation take place?

The environment/room/space you are to speak can play a big role in shaping the final presentation of your speech.

Points to consider are:

  • Where will I be in relation to the audience?
  • Will they see me easily?
  • Will they hear me easily?
  • Do I need a microphone?
  • Is there a place to put notes if I’m using them?
  • Where can I set up my samples for people to take them easily?
  • Are there power points if I want to use any electronic devices?
  • Do I have to provide everything I want to use (e.g.: computer, screen, leads…)?

Many fully prepared, beautifully rehearsed speeches fail because insufficient thought has gone into where they are to take place.

It’s no fun when people can neither see nor hear you or the carefully thought through demonstration is stymied through lack of an electric socket in the right place!

Martha’s Notes, WHERE: Church meeting room. It can seat everybody comfortably and there’s room for a table to put out a display of fliers and trays of food, paper napkins etc. Arrange the chairs in a horseshoe or semi-circle so everybody can see clearly.

Pulling the brainstorm notes together in an outline

Once you've worked your way through making notes under your WHY, WHO, WHAT, HOW, WHEN, and WHERE headings, you're ready for the next step.

That's picking and choosing, then re-ordering and re-writing the material you've taken from the WHAT and HOW segments of your brainstorm until you're satisfied it flows well and meets your speech purpose.

After you’ve completed outlining your speech, you’ll be ready to do any extra research required, and then you’re on to the task of writing your speech.

Martha's completed outline

Here's Martha’s Finished Outline as an example. 

Speech length : 15 minutes with extra time for a 'Question and Answer' session at the end of the presentation.

Speech title : How to win a future for your family when the kids need feeding, and the bills want paying

Introduction (2.5 minutes): Thanks for coming today … Summer heat, we’d all rather be at beach reading a book under a sun umbrella….etc. But I hope I’ve got something for you that’ll more than make up for it. I look around the hall and I see a lot of women just like me: women, who work hard, love their families, etc., … want the best for them.

(Insert anecdotal humor, perhaps a small personal story about credit cards. For instance, the only way I could manage them was to banish them the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet. Or use them to test how sharp my scissors were.)

Main Idea 1 (3 minutes): Introduce business and what it is.

Explain how it functions on a daily basis. Briefly outline long-term goals.

(Quick show-and-tell with flyers and food. Invite people to sample at end and ask questions.)

Main idea 2 (3.5 minutes): My life before the business (tie to women in audience). My life after business started. What I have achieved. The hardest part about starting, staying in business. The best part about starting, staying in business. People who have inspired me.

Main idea 3 (3.5 minutes): What I’ve learned in the process about my family, others and myself … Examples. How I keep myself inspired … goal setting, listening and learning from others

Summary : (2.5 minutes): Very quick round up of principal points. The future – the way forward for you, the women in the audience listening. Invite questions if time. Remind them about the fliers and the food! Thank organizers.

Summary - Core speech planning questions

That’s it! Very short, sweet and simple.

There’s nothing magical about planning your speech. It's just methodical: one-step-after-another. If you find yourself flustered go back to the core brainstorm headings and ask yourself the key questions once more.

  • WHY am I giving this presentation? What is my purpose?What do I want my audience to do, think, or feel as a result of having heard me speak?
  • WHO is this speech for?
  • WHAT am I going to tell them that’s relevant and interesting?
  • HOW long is the speech expected to be?
  • HOW am I going to present it?
  • WHEN is the speech for? (Date, day, time, season)
  • WHERE is the speech going to happen? (Hall, outdoors, stadium…)

Write your answers down and let them be your guide.

Remember this is not your finished speech.

It’s your outline * : a map of what you’re going to cover.

Don’t spend too much time trying to get it perfect. You’ll want that energy for researching, writing and rehearsing!

And guess what is coming up next?

* If you'd like more about outlining a speech, including a printable outline template to use, go to sample speech outline .

Getting from planning to delivery

Here are links to articles on:

  • how to research your speech . The reasons for research are discussed under the heading below -"When and What to Research"
  • how to write your speech
  • how to prepare and use cue cards. The benefits of using cue cards over reading from a word-for-word script are enormous. Because you are freed from having to focus on your notes you can interact with your audience directly. Your speech becomes more spontaneous and "in-the-moment".
  • how to use story telling to enrich your speech . Do consider weaving your personal stories into your speech. They add tremendous audience appeal. 
  • how to use props. If you're planning a "show and tell" type speech, this page is essential reading.
  • how to rehearse. Rehearsal will lift your speech from ordinary to extraordinary. You'll find out privately where the glitches are, rather than publicly. It gives you an opportunity to refine your delivery.  I think it's absolutely essential!  

When and what to research

If you already know your subject thoroughly, inside out, back to front and sideways, there will be no need to research and you can skip this part of planning your speech.

BUT if you don’t, the outline should point up the gaps needing to be filled with specific information.

In our example it there seems little need for Martha to do any further research, as this speech is her personal story.

However, there are a number of ways she could strengthen her speech and add real benefits for her audience.

For example: she could bring along fliers from local training institutions providing courses especially geared for women setting up business on their own or she could provide a list of business women in the community willing to mentor and advise women in start-ups. A reading list would be helpful, as would a resource list.

All of these ideas need researching before presenting.

Careful research adds authority to your work. It shows care, thought and dedication to getting it right. Your audience will appreciate and respect you for it.

NB. If you are presenting material as fact rather than as opinion, check it! Make sure you know rather than think you know. If you can’t find out, then say so.

PS. Remember those modes or preferred learning styles?

Did you pick how Martha planned to meet each of them in her outline?

For the 'auditory' learners she would tell her story using her voice in a lively, interesting-to-listen-to way! Nothing turns an auditory focused person's ears off faster than a monotone drawl.

For the 'visual' people, she would provide fliers and food to see. Plus her appearance and body language would 'say' to them, this is a vibrant, purpose-filled person who loves what she does.

And lastly, she would use 'word pictures' to illustrate the points she made in her speech. The 'visual' would literally 'see' where she was coming from by using their imagination to recreate her images in their own minds!

For the 'kinesthetics', Martha planned to actively tell her story. She would use vivid 'action' words describing how she did things.

Example: ' I started a business.'  is bland. It doesn't communicate any of the effort or feelings involved.

By contrast: ' I started my own business. What a journey! I know you've watched your children learning to walk. Well, that was me! I fell. I skinned my knees and bruised myself. I got up, took two steps and crashed again...'

You get the idea. This is action, living and real.

The 'kinesthetic' folk will appreciate and know what she is talking about.

Additionally, Martha's fliers and food will appeal too. They can hold them, actively read the fliers and taste the food.

Lastly, they will be aware of what Martha does while she's talking to them. Is she conveying energy, excitement and action in her body language? If so, she'll have them with her!

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what is the first stage in speech writing

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A Five-Step Model for Speech Preparation

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Differentiate the Stages or Processes in Speech Writing 

Back to: Pedagogy of English- Unit 5

Differentiate the Stages or Processes in Speech Writing

Speech is an oral presentation of information or delivery of messages through the use of words of spoken words delivered in front of or to an audience who have gathered in a seminar, meeting, conference, or some other event. It is a form of oral communication which is the oldest method and also the most effective method of communication. 

Differences between the stages and processes in speech writing

The main differences between the stages and processes in speech writing are as follows: 

1. Stage refers to the different phases of completing a task whereas processes refers to the different procedures or steps involved in completing a task. 

2. The stages of speech writing can be evolutionary and may take a series of steps whereas in process, the steps are more prescriptive. 

3. The stages of speech writing mainly includes introduction, body, and conclusion whereas the process of speech writing may include knowing your audience and identifying a clear message that you need to deliver to them. 

4. In stages, the speech should be structured whereas in process, the proper steps of writing a speech must be followed. 

5. The stages of speech writing also include speaking strategy, the audience journey, and editing whereas the process of speech writing includes identifying the objective, gathering information, interviewing the speaker, defining a clear message, and the like.

Components of speech writing

The components of speech writing are as follows:

Introduction

A speech should start with an introduction to the topic or the subject matter that is being presented in the speech. It should not last more than 1 to 2 minutes and it should be brief.

This section includes the main messages of the speech and should cover all the information that needs to be presented in the speech.

The conclusion should summarize the central ideas presented in the speech and give the speech a closure and a sense of completion. It should also be shorter than both the introduction and the body.

Speech is considered to be one of the most effective ways of delivering a message in any event. A speaker can present his thoughts and opinions on various matters to a large group of audience through his or her speech. Due to its efficacy, it is widely used around the world. Be it for social purposes or religious purposes, a speech can come in handy for several kinds of events

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What makes a speech persuasive and memorable – and how do you write one? How can storytelling help political, corporate, nonprofit, and community leaders achieve their goals? What is the role of the speech in our politics, policymaking, and international relations? This course will explore the techniques speechwriters and speakers use, from research to rhetoric, to shape messages that move people and change the world.

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Speech Writing

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  • Updated on  
  • Jan 16, 2024

Speech Writing

The power of good, inspiring, motivating, and thought-provoking speeches can never be overlooked. If we retrospect, a good speech has not only won people’s hearts but also has been a verbal tool to conquer nations. For centuries, many leaders have used this instrument to charm audiences with their powerful speeches. Apart from vocalizing your speech perfectly, the words you choose in a speech carry immense weight, and practising speech writing begins with our school life. Speech writing is an important part of the English syllabus for Class 12th, Class 11th, and Class 8th to 10th. This blog brings you the Speech Writing format, samples, examples, tips, and tricks!

This Blog Includes:

What is speech writing, speech in english language writing, how do you begin an english-language speech, introduction, how to write a speech, speech writing samples, example of a great speech, english speech topics, practice time.

Must Read: Story Writing Format for Class 9 & 10

Speech writing is the art of using proper grammar and expression to convey a thought or message to a reader. Speech writing isn’t all that distinct from other types of narrative writing. However, students should be aware of certain distinct punctuation and writing style techniques. While writing the ideal speech might be challenging, sticking to the appropriate speech writing structure will ensure that you never fall short.

“There are three things to aim at in public speaking: first, to get into your subject, then to get your subject into yourself, and lastly, to get your subject into the heart of your audience.”- Alexander Gregg

The English language includes eight parts of speech i.e. nouns , pronouns , verbs , adjectives 410 , adverbs , prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections.

  • Noun- A noun is a word that describes anything, such as an animal, a person, a place, or an emotion. Nouns are the building blocks for most sentences.
  • Pronoun – Pronouns are words that can be used in place of nouns. They are used so that we don’t have to repeat words. This makes our writing and speaking much more natural.
  • Verb – A verb is a term that implies activity or ‘doing.’ These are very vital for your children’s grammar studies, as a sentence cannot be complete without a verb.
  • Adjective – An adjective is a term that describes something. An adjective is frequently used before a noun to add extra information or description.
  • Prepositions- A preposition is a term that expresses the location or timing of something in relation to something else.
  • Conjunction- Because every language has its own set of conjunctions, English conjunctions differ from those found in other languages. They’re typically used as a connecting word between two statements, concepts, or ideas.
  • Interjections- Interjections are words that are used to describe a strong emotion or a sudden feeling.

Relevant Read: Speech on the Importance of English

The way you start your English speech can set the tone for the remainder of it. This semester, there are a variety of options for you to begin presentations in your classes. For example, try some of these engaging speech in English language starters.

  • Rhetorical questions : A rhetorical question is a figure of speech that uses a question to convey a point rather than asking for a response. The answer to a rhetorical question may be clear, yet the questioner asks it to emphasize the point. Rhetorical questions may be a good method for students to start their English speeches. This method of introducing your material might be appealing to the viewers and encourage them to consider how they personally relate to your issue.
  • Statistics: When making an instructive or persuasive speech in an English class, statistics can help to strengthen the speaker’s authority and understanding of the subject. To get your point over quickly and create an emotional response, try using an unexpected statistic or fact that will resonate with the audience.
  • Set up an imaginary scene: Create an imaginary situation in your audience’s thoughts if you want to persuade them to agree with you with your speech. This method of starting your speech assists each member of the audience in visualizing a fantastic scenario that you wish to see come true.

Relevant Read: Reported Speech Rules With Exercises

Format of Speech Writing

Here is the format of Speech Writing:

  • Introduction : Greet the audience, tell them about yourself and further introduce the topic.
  • Body : Present the topic in an elaborate way, explaining its key features, pros and cons, if any and the like.
  • Conclusion : Summary of your speech, wrap up the topic and leave your audience with a compelling reminder to think about!

Let’s further understand each element of the format of Speech Writing in further detail:

After the greetings, the Introduction has to be attention-getting. Quickly get people’s attention. The goal of a speech is to engage the audience and persuade them to think or act in your favour. The introduction must effectively include: 

  • A brief preview of your topic. 
  • Define the outlines of your speech. (For example, I’ll be talking about…First..Second…Third)
  • Begin with a story, quote, fact, joke, or observation in the room. It shouldn’t be longer than 3-4 lines. (For Example: “Mahatma Gandhi said once…”, or “This topic reminds me of an incident/story…”)

This part is also important because that’s when your audience decides if the speech is worth their time. Keep your introduction factual, interesting, and convincing.

It is the most important part of any speech. You should provide a number of reasons and arguments to convince the audience to agree with you.

Handling objections is an important aspect of speech composition. There is no time for questions or concerns since a speech is a monologue. Any concerns that may occur during the speech will be addressed by a powerful speech. As a result, you’ll be able to respond to questions as they come in from the crowd. To make speech simpler you can prepare a flow chart of the details in a systematic way.

For example: If your speech is about waste management; distribute information and arrange it according to subparagraphs for your reference. It could include:

  • What is Waste Management?
  • Major techniques used to manage waste
  • Advantages of Waste Management  
  • Importance of Waste Management 

The conclusion should be something that the audience takes with them. It could be a reminder, a collective call to action, a summary of your speech, or a story. For example: “It is upon us to choose the fate of our home, the earth by choosing to begin waste management at our personal spaces.”

After concluding, add a few lines of gratitude to the audience for their time.

For example: “Thank you for being a wonderful audience and lending me your time. Hope this speech gave you something to take away.”

speech writing format

Practice Your Speech Writing with these English Speech topics for students !

A good speech is well-timed, informative, and thought-provoking. Here are the tips for writing a good school speech:

Speech Sandwich of Public Speaking

The introduction and conclusion must be crisp. People psychologically follow the primacy effect (tendency to remember the first part of the list/speech) and recency effect (tendency to recall the last part of the list/speech). 

Use Concrete Facts

Make sure you thoroughly research your topic. Including facts appeals to the audience and makes your speech stronger. How much waste is managed? Give names of organisations and provide numerical data in one line.

Use Rhetorical Strategies and Humour

Include one or two open-ended or thought-provoking questions.  For Example: “Would we want our future generation to face trouble due to global warming?” Also, make good use of humour and convenient jokes that engages your audience and keeps them listening.

Check Out: Message Writing

Know your Audience and Plan Accordingly

This is essential before writing your speech. To whom is it directed? The categorised audience on the basis of –

  • Knowledge of the Topic (familiar or unfamiliar)

Use the information to formulate the speech accordingly, use information that they will understand, and a sentence that they can retain.

Timing Yourself is Important

An important aspect of your speech is to time yourself.  Don’t write a speech that exceeds your word limit. Here’s how can decide the right timing for your speech writing:

  • A one-minute speech roughly requires around 130-150 words
  • A two-minute speech requires roughly around 250-300 words

Recommended Read: Letter Writing

Speech Writing Examples

Here are some examples to help you understand how to write a good speech. Read these to prepare for your next speech:

Write a speech to be delivered in the school assembly as Rahul/ Rubaina of Delhi Public School emphasises the importance of cleanliness, implying that the level of cleanliness represents the character of its residents. (150-200 words)

“Cleanliness is next to godliness,” said the great John Wesley. Hello, respected principal, instructors, and good friends. Today, I, Rahul/Rubaina, stand in front of you all to emphasise the significance of cleanliness.

Cleanliness is the condition or attribute of being or remaining clean. Everyone must learn about cleaning, hygiene, sanitation, and the different diseases that are produced by unsanitary circumstances. It is essential for physical well-being and the maintenance of a healthy atmosphere at home and at school. A filthy atmosphere invites a large number of mosquitos to grow and spread dangerous diseases. On the other side, poor personal cleanliness causes a variety of skin disorders as well as lowered immunity.

Habits formed at a young age become ingrained in one’s personality. Even if we teach our children to wash their hands before and after meals, brush their teeth and bathe on a regular basis, we are unconcerned about keeping public places clean. On October 2, 2014, the Indian Prime Minister began the “Swachh Bharat” programme to offer sanitation amenities to every family, including toilets, solid and liquid waste disposal systems, village cleanliness, and safe and appropriate drinking water supplies. Teachers and children in schools are actively participating in the ‘Clean India Campaign’ with zeal and excitement.

Good health ensures a healthy mind, which leads to better overall productivity, higher living standards, and economic development. It will improve India’s international standing. As a result, a clean environment is a green environment with fewer illnesses. Thus, cleanliness is defined as a symbol of mental purity.

Thank you very much.

Relevant Read: Speech on Corruption

You are Sahil/Sanya, the school’s Head Girl/Head Boy. You are greatly troubled by the increasing instances of aggressive behaviour among your students. You decide to speak about it during the morning assembly. Create a speech about “School Discipline.” (150 – 200 words)

INDISCIPLINE IN SCHOOLS,

It has been reported that the frequency of fights and incidences of bullying in our school has increased dramatically in the previous several months. Good morning to everyone present. Today, I, Sahil/Sanya, your head boy/girl, am here to shed light on the serious topic of “Increased Indiscipline in Schools.”

It has come to light that instructor disobedience, bullying, confrontations with students, truancy, and insults are becoming more widespread. Furthermore, there have been reports of parents noticing a shift in their children’s attitudes. As a result, many children are suffering emotionally, psychologically, and physically. The impact of this mindset on children at a young age is devastating and irreversible.

Not to mention the harm done to the school’s property. Theft of chalk, scribbling on desks, walls and lavatory doors, destruction of CCTV cameras and so forth. We are merely depriving ourselves of the comforts granted to us by doing so.

Following numerous meetings, it was determined that the main reasons for the problem were a lack of sufficient guidance, excessive use of social media, and peer pressure. The council is working to make things better. Everyone is required to take life skills classes. Counselling, motivating, and instilling friendly ideals will be part of the curriculum. Seminars for parents and students will be held on a regular basis.

A counsellor is being made available to help you all discuss your sentiments, grudges, and personal problems. We are doing everything we can and expect you to do the same.

So, let us work together to create an environment in which we encourage, motivate, assist, and be nice to one another because we are good and civilised humans capable of a great deal of love.

Relevant Read: How to Write a Speech on Discipline?

The current increase in incidences of violent student misbehaviour is cause for alarm for everyone. Students who learn how to manage their anger can help to alleviate the situation. Write a 150-200-word speech about the topic to be delivered at the school’s morning assembly. (10)

HOW TO CONTROL ANGER

Honourable Principal, Respected Teachers, and Dear Friends, I’d like to share a few “Ways to Manage Anger” with you today.

The growing intolerance among the younger generation, which is resulting in violence against teachers, is cause for severe concern. The guru-shishya parampara is losing its lustre. Aggressive behaviour in students can be provoked by a variety of factors, including self-defence, stressful circumstance, over-stimulation, or a lack of adult supervision.

It has become imperative to address the situation. Life skills workshops will be included in the curriculum. Teachers should be trained to deal with such stubborn and confrontational behaviours. Meditation and deep breathing are very beneficial and should be practised every morning. Students should be taught to count to ten before reacting angrily. Sessions on anger control and its importance must also be held.

Remember that Anger is one letter away from danger. It becomes much more crucial to be able to control one’s rage. It’s never too late to start, as a wise man once said.

“Every minute you stay angry, you lose sixty seconds of peace of mind.”

Relevant Read: English Speech Topics for Students

Martin Luther King Jr’s ‘I Have A Dream’ is one of his most famous speeches. Its impact has lasted through generations. The speech is written by utilising the techniques above. Here are some examples:

“still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination” – emotive Language

“In a sense, we’ve come to our nation’s capital to cash a check” – personalising the speech

“to stand up for freedom together” – a call to action.

Importantly, this is an example of how the listener comes first while drafting a speech. The language chosen appeals to a specific sort of audience and was widely utilised in 1963 when the speech was delivered.

  • The Best Day of My Life
  • Social Media: Bane or Boon?
  • Pros and Cons of Online Learning
  • Benefits of Yoga
  • If I had a Superpower
  • I wish I were ______
  • Environment Conservation
  • Women Should Rule the World!
  • The Best Lesson I Have Learned
  • Paperbacks vs E-books
  • How to Tackle a Bad Habit?
  • My Favorite Pastime/Hobby
  • Understanding Feminism
  • Fear of Missing Out (FOMO): Is it real or not?
  • Importance of Reading
  • Importance of Books in Our Life
  • My Favorite Fictional Character
  • Introverts vs Extroverts
  • Lessons to Learn from Sports
  • Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Also Read: How to Ace IELTS Writing Section?

Ans. Speech writing is the process of communicating a notion or message to a reader by employing proper punctuation and expression. Speech writing is similar to other types of narrative writing. However, students should be aware of some different punctuation and writing structure techniques.

Ans. Before beginning with the speech, choose an important topic. Create an outline; rehearse your speech, and adjust the outline based on comments from the rehearsal. This five-step strategy for speech planning serves as the foundation for both lessons and learning activities.

Ans. Writing down a speech is vital since it helps you better comprehend the issue, organises your thoughts, prevents errors in your speech, allows you to get more comfortable with it, and improves its overall quality.

Speech writing and public speaking are effective and influential. Hope this blog helped you know the various tips for writing the speech people would want to hear. If you need help in making the right career choices at any phase of your academic and professional journey, our Leverage Edu experts are here to guide you. Sign up for a free session now!

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Frantically Speaking

15 Powerful Speech Opening Lines (And How to Create Your Own)

Hrideep barot.

  • Public Speaking , Speech Writing

powerful speech opening

Powerful speech opening lines set the tone and mood of your speech. It’s what grips the audience to want to know more about the rest of your talk.

The first few seconds are critical. It’s when you have maximum attention of the audience. And you must capitalize on that!

Instead of starting off with something plain and obvious such as a ‘Thank you’ or ‘Good Morning’, there’s so much more you can do for a powerful speech opening (here’s a great article we wrote a while ago on how you should NOT start your speech ).

To help you with this, I’ve compiled some of my favourite openings from various speakers. These speakers have gone on to deliver TED talks , win international Toastmaster competitions or are just noteworthy people who have mastered the art of communication.

After each speaker’s opening line, I have added how you can include their style of opening into your own speech. Understanding how these great speakers do it will certainly give you an idea to create your own speech opening line which will grip the audience from the outset!

Alright! Let’s dive into the 15 powerful speech openings…

Note: Want to take your communications skills to the next level? Book a complimentary consultation with one of our expert communication coaches. We’ll look under the hood of your hurdles and pick two to three growth opportunities so you can speak with impact!

1. Ric Elias

Opening: “Imagine a big explosion as you climb through 3,000 ft. Imagine a plane full of smoke. Imagine an engine going clack, clack, clack. It sounds scary. Well I had a unique seat that day. I was sitting in 1D.”

How to use the power of imagination to open your speech?

Putting your audience in a state of imagination can work extremely well to captivate them for the remainder of your talk.

It really helps to bring your audience in a certain mood that preps them for what’s about to come next. Speakers have used this with high effectiveness by transporting their audience into an imaginary land to help prove their point.

When Ric Elias opened his speech, the detail he used (3000 ft, sound of the engine going clack-clack-clack) made me feel that I too was in the plane. He was trying to make the audience experience what he was feeling – and, at least in my opinion, he did.

When using the imagination opening for speeches, the key is – detail. While we want the audience to wander into imagination, we want them to wander off to the image that we want to create for them. So, detail out your scenario if you’re going to use this technique.

Make your audience feel like they too are in the same circumstance as you were when you were in that particular situation.

2. Barack Obama

Opening: “You can’t say it, but you know it’s true.”

3. Seth MacFarlane

Opening: “There’s nowhere I would rather be on a day like this than around all this electoral equipment.” (It was raining)

How to use humour to open your speech?

When you use humour in a manner that suits your personality, it can set you up for a great speech. Why? Because getting a laugh in the first 30 seconds or so is a great way to quickly get the audience to like you.

And when they like you, they are much more likely to listen to and believe in your ideas.

Obama effortlessly uses his opening line to entice laughter among the audience. He brilliantly used the setting (the context of Trump becoming President) and said a line that completely matched his style of speaking.

Saying a joke without really saying a joke and getting people to laugh requires you to be completely comfortable in your own skin. And that’s not easy for many people (me being one of them).

If the joke doesn’t land as expected, it could lead to a rocky start.

Keep in mind the following when attempting to deliver a funny introduction:

  • Know your audience: Make sure your audience gets the context of the joke (if it’s an inside joke among the members you’re speaking to, that’s even better!). You can read this article we wrote where we give you tips on how you can actually get to know your audience better to ensure maximum impact with your speech openings
  • The joke should suit your natural personality. Don’t make it look forced or it won’t elicit the desired response
  • Test the opening out on a few people who match your real audience. Analyze their response and tweak the joke accordingly if necessary
  • Starting your speech with humour means your setting the tone of your speech. It would make sense to have a few more jokes sprinkled around the rest of the speech as well as the audience might be expecting the same from you

4. Mohammed Qahtani

Opening: Puts a cigarette on his lips, lights a lighter, stops just before lighting the cigarette. Looks at audience, “What?”

5. Darren Tay

Opening: Puts a white pair of briefs over his pants.

How to use props to begin your speech?

The reason props work so well in a talk is because in most cases the audience is not expecting anything more than just talking. So when a speaker pulls out an object that is unusual, everyone’s attention goes right to it.

It makes you wonder why that prop is being used in this particular speech.

The key word here is unusual . To grip the audience’s attention at the beginning of the speech, the prop being used should be something that the audience would never expect. Otherwise, it just becomes something that is common. And common = boring!

What Mohammed Qahtani and Darren Tay did superbly well in their talks was that they used props that nobody expected them to.

By pulling out a cigarette and lighter or a white pair of underwear, the audience can’t help but be gripped by what the speaker is about to do next. And that makes for a powerful speech opening.

6. Simon Sinek

Opening: “How do you explain when things don’t go as we assume? Or better, how do you explain when others are able to achieve things that seem to defy all of the assumptions?”

7. Julian Treasure

Opening: “The human voice. It’s the instrument we all play. It’s the most powerful sound in the world. Probably the only one that can start a war or say “I love you.” And yet many people have the experience that when they speak people don’t listen to them. Why is that? How can we speak powerfully to make change in the world?”

How to use questions to open a speech?

I use this method often. Starting off with a question is the simplest way to start your speech in a manner that immediately engages the audience.

But we should keep our questions compelling as opposed to something that is fairly obvious.

I’ve heard many speakers start their speeches with questions like “How many of us want to be successful?”

No one is going to say ‘no’ to that and frankly, I just feel silly raising my hand at such questions.

Simon Sinek and Jullian Treasure used questions in a manner that really made the audience think and make them curious to find out what the answer to that question is.

What Jullian Treasure did even better was the use of a few statements which built up to his question. This made the question even more compelling and set the theme for what the rest of his talk would be about.

So think of what question you can ask in your speech that will:

  • Set the theme for the remainder of your speech
  • Not be something that is fairly obvious
  • Be compelling enough so that the audience will actually want to know what the answer to that question will be

8. Aaron Beverley

Opening: Long pause (after an absurdly long introduction of a 57-word speech title). “Be honest. You enjoyed that, didn’t you?”

How to use silence for speech openings?

The reason this speech opening stands out is because of the fact that the title itself is 57 words long. The audience was already hilariously intrigued by what was going to come next.

But what’s so gripping here is the way Aaron holds the crowd’s suspense by…doing nothing. For about 10 to 12 seconds he did nothing but stand and look at the audience. Everyone quietened down. He then broke this silence by a humorous remark that brought the audience laughing down again.

When going on to open your speech, besides focusing on building a killer opening sentence, how about just being silent?

It’s important to keep in mind that the point of having a strong opening is so that the audience’s attention is all on you and are intrigued enough to want to listen to the rest of your speech.

Silence is a great way to do that. When you get on the stage, just pause for a few seconds (about 3 to 5 seconds) and just look at the crowd. Let the audience and yourself settle in to the fact that the spotlight is now on you.

I can’t put my finger on it, but there is something about starting the speech off with a pure pause that just makes the beginning so much more powerful. It adds credibility to you as a speaker as well, making you look more comfortable and confident on stage. 

If you want to know more about the power of pausing in public speaking , check out this post we wrote. It will give you a deeper insight into the importance of pausing and how you can harness it for your own speeches. You can also check out this video to know more about Pausing for Public Speaking:

9. Dan Pink

Opening: “I need to make a confession at the outset here. Little over 20 years ago, I did something that I regret. Something that I’m not particularly proud of. Something that in many ways I wish no one would ever know but that here I feel kind of obliged to reveal.”

10. Kelly McGonigal

Opening: “I have a confession to make. But first I want you to make a little confession to me.”

How to use a build-up to open your speech?

When there are so many amazing ways to start a speech and grip an audience from the outset, why would you ever choose to begin your speech with a ‘Good morning?’.

That’s what I love about build-ups. They set the mood for something awesome that’s about to come in that the audience will feel like they just have to know about.

Instead of starting a speech as it is, see if you can add some build-up to your beginning itself. For instance, in Kelly McGonigal’s speech, she could have started off with the question of stress itself (which she eventually moves on to in her speech). It’s not a bad way to start the speech.

But by adding the statement of “I have a confession to make” and then not revealing the confession for a little bit, the audience is gripped to know what she’s about to do next and find out what indeed is her confession.

11. Tim Urban

Opening: “So in college, I was a government major. Which means that I had to write a lot of papers. Now when a normal student writes a paper, they might spread the work out a little like this.”

12. Scott Dinsmore

Opening: “8 years ago, I got the worst career advice of my life.”

How to use storytelling as a speech opening?

“The most powerful person in the world is the storyteller.” Steve Jobs

Storytelling is the foundation of good speeches. Starting your speech with a story is a great way to grip the audience’s attention. It makes them yearn to want to know how the rest of the story is going to pan out.

Tim Urban starts off his speech with a story dating back to his college days. His use of slides is masterful and something we all can learn from. But while his story sounds simple, it does the job of intriguing the audience to want to know more.

As soon as I heard the opening lines, I thought to myself “If normal students write their paper in a certain manner, how does Tim write his papers?”

Combine such a simple yet intriguing opening with comedic slides, and you’ve got yourself a pretty gripping speech.

Scott Dismore’s statement has a similar impact. However, just a side note, Scott Dismore actually started his speech with “Wow, what an honour.”

I would advise to not start your talk with something such as that. It’s way too common and does not do the job an opening must, which is to grip your audience and set the tone for what’s coming.

13. Larry Smith

Opening: “I want to discuss with you this afternoon why you’re going to fail to have a great career.”

14. Jane McGonigal

Opening: “You will live 7.5 minutes longer than you would have otherwise, just because you watched this talk.”

How to use provocative statements to start your speech?

Making a provocative statement creates a keen desire among the audience to want to know more about what you have to say. It immediately brings everyone into attention.

Larry Smith did just that by making his opening statement surprising, lightly humorous, and above all – fearful. These elements lead to an opening statement which creates so much curiosity among the audience that they need to know how your speech pans out.

This one time, I remember seeing a speaker start a speech with, “Last week, my best friend committed suicide.” The entire crowd was gripped. Everyone could feel the tension in the room.

They were just waiting for the speaker to continue to know where this speech will go.

That’s what a hard-hitting statement does, it intrigues your audience so much that they can’t wait to hear more! Just a tip, if you do start off with a provocative, hard-hitting statement, make sure you pause for a moment after saying it.

Silence after an impactful statement will allow your message to really sink in with the audience.

Related article: 5 Ways to Grab Your Audience’s Attention When You’re Losing it!

15. Ramona J Smith

Opening: In a boxing stance, “Life would sometimes feel like a fight. The punches, jabs and hooks will come in the form of challenges, obstacles and failures. Yet if you stay in the ring and learn from those past fights, at the end of each round, you’ll be still standing.”

How to use your full body to grip the audience at the beginning of your speech?

In a talk, the audience is expecting you to do just that – talk. But when you enter the stage and start putting your full body into use in a way that the audience does not expect, it grabs their attention.

Body language is critical when it comes to public speaking. Hand gestures, stage movement, facial expressions are all things that need to be paid attention to while you’re speaking on stage. But that’s not I’m talking about here.

Here, I’m referring to a unique use of the body that grips the audience, like how Ramona did. By using her body to get into a boxing stance, imitating punches, jabs and hooks with her arms while talking – that’s what got the audience’s attention.

The reason I say this is so powerful is because if you take Ramona’s speech and remove the body usage from her opening, the entire magic of the opening falls flat.

While the content is definitely strong, without those movements, she would not have captured the audience’s attention as beautifully as she did with the use of her body.

So if you have a speech opening that seems slightly dull, see if you can add some body movement to it.

If your speech starts with a story of someone running, actually act out the running. If your speech starts with a story of someone reading, actually act out the reading.

It will make your speech opening that much more impactful.

Related article: 5 Body Language Tips to Command the Stage

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Final Words

So there it is! 15 speech openings from some of my favourite speeches. Hopefully, these will act as a guide for you to create your own opening which is super impactful and sets you off on the path to becoming a powerful public speaker!

But remember, while a speech opening is super important, it’s just part of an overall structure.

If you’re serious about not just creating a great speech opening but to improve your public speaking at an overall level, I would highly recommend you to check out this course: Acumen Presents: Chris Anderson on Public Speaking on Udemy. Not only does it have specific lectures on starting and ending a speech, but it also offers an in-depth guide into all the nuances of public speaking. 

Being the founder of TED Talks, Chris Anderson provides numerous examples of the best TED speakers to give us a very practical way of overcoming stage fear and delivering a speech that people will remember. His course has helped me personally and I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking to learn public speaking. 

No one is ever “done” learning public speaking. It’s a continuous process and you can always get better. Keep learning, keep conquering and keep being awesome!

Lastly, if you want to know how you should NOT open your speech, we’ve got a video for you:

Hrideep Barot

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what is the first stage in speech writing

COMMENTS

  1. How to write a good speech [7 easily followed steps]

    Tell them (Body of your speech - the main ideas plus examples) Tell them what you told them (The ending) TEST before presenting. Read aloud several times to check the flow of material, the suitability of language and the timing. Return to top. A step by step guide for writing a great speech.

  2. How to Write a Good Speech: 10 Steps and Tips

    Here are five more tips for writing and practicing your speech: 1. Structure first, write second. If you start the writing process before organizing your thoughts, you may have to re-order, cut, and scrap the sentences you worked hard on. Save yourself some time by using a speech structure, like the one above, to order your talking points first.

  3. The 8 Key Steps to Successful Speech Writing (With Tips)

    5. Use concrete details and visual aids. Use concrete details to support your points. Brief stories, interesting examples, or factual data can help to engage your audience and convey the truth of your purpose. Consider using visual aids to further support your speech. Images can be powerful and engaging.

  4. Fundamentals of Speechwriting

    There is 1 module in this course. Fundamentals of Speechwriting is a course that enhances speechwriting skills by deepening learners' understanding of the impact of key elements on developing coherent and impactful speeches. It is aimed at learners with experience writing and speaking who wish to enhance their current skills.

  5. Speech Writing: How to write a speech in 5 steps

    Speech writing step 1: Get focused. TED talks famously focus on 'one idea worth spreading' and this is what helps them to retain their power. Before you write a single line, figure out what the ONE idea is that you'll shape your talk around. When your talk has a single focus you'll see huge benefits: Clarity: For yourself and your audience.

  6. Beginners Guide to What is a Speech Writing

    The speechwriting process relies on a well-defined structure, crucial to both the speech's content and the writing process. It encompasses a compelling introduction, an informative body, and a strong conclusion. This process serves as a foundation for effective speeches, guiding the speaker through a series of reasons and a persuasive ...

  7. Here's How to Write a Perfect Speech

    Step 3: Edit and polish what you've written until you have a cohesive first draft of your speech. Step 4: Practice, practice, practice. The more you practice your speech the more you'll discover which sections need reworked, which transitions should be improved, and which sentences are hard to say. You'll also find out how you're doing ...

  8. Speeches

    Ethos refers to an appeal to your audience by establishing your authenticity and trustworthiness as a speaker. If you employ pathos, you appeal to your audience's emotions. Using logos includes the support of hard facts, statistics, and logical argumentation. The most effective speeches usually present a combination these rhetorical strategies.

  9. How to Write a Structured Speech in 5 Steps

    How to Write a Speech in 5 Steps. 1. Make an Outline. Just like in essay writing, writing a speech outline will help surface key points. This doesn't need to be overly complicated. Most speeches contain three main sections. The intro, which might feature personal stories that illustrate the subject or problem you're addressing; the body of ...

  10. The General Steps in the Speechwriting Process

    Determining the appropriate style and delivery for the audience and setting. 7. Determining the key points and outlining the speech. 8. Drafting the speech and generating feedback. 9. Completing and, if operative, submitting speech text to the speaker. 10. Feedback, editing, and approval of the speech.

  11. The Writing Process

    Step 1: Prewriting. Step 2: Planning and outlining. Step 3: Writing a first draft. Step 4: Redrafting and revising. Step 5: Editing and proofreading. Other interesting articles. Frequently asked questions about the writing process.

  12. The Ultimate Blueprint: A Research-Driven Deep Dive ...

    This article provides a comprehensive, research-based introduction to the major steps, or strategies, that writers work through as they endeavor to communicate with audiences.. Since the 1960s, the writing process has been defined to be a series of steps, stages, or strategies. Most simply, the writing process is conceptualized as four major steps: prewriting, drafting, revising, editing.

  13. The five stages of speech preparation

    Stage 1: The idea. What you have: A concept of what you what you want to say, and in what order. Some stories to tell. A theme. What you need: Exactly the right stuff, in exactly the right order. How to get there: Write it down, share it, or blog it. Get feedback. Tell the story to people informally and see how they react.

  14. Speech Writing Tips: 27 Key Tips from Seasoned Pros

    Speech Writing Tips for Choosing A Topic. #9 Explore relevant speech topics. #10 Ask event coordinators for speech ideas. #11 Ask social media for speech topics. Writing the Speech. #12 Write your speech outline first. #13 Write Your Speech Introduction Last. #14 Use personal stories and humor in your speech.

  15. The Speech Writing Process A Public Speakers Guide

    Your speech is a journey. Your audience needs to know your key premise and understand where you intend to bring them along the path to your conclusion. This is most successfully accomplished in the writing phase with a proper outline. An outline allows you to organize your thoughts before you go any further in the writing process and keep ...

  16. Planning your speech: how to prepare a great speech outline

    After you've completed outlining your speech, you'll be ready to do any extra research required, and then you're on to the task of writing your speech. Martha's completed outline. Here's Martha's Finished Outline as an example. Speech length: 15 minutes with extra time for a 'Question and Answer' session at the end of the presentation.

  17. 5-Step Model for Speech Preparation

    How to Prepare a Speech in 5 Steps. To encourage students to be more intentional in their speech preparation, I teach a five-step model: Think, Investigate, Compose, Rehearse, and Revise. Think about your topic and audience; investigate or research the topic; compose an outline; rehearse your speech, and revise the outline according to feedback ...

  18. How to Start a Speech: The Best (and Worst) Speech Openers

    Opening Line: "All right. I'm going to show you a couple of images from a very diverting paper in The Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine.". #6: Julian Treasure - "How to Speak so that People Want to Listen". Opening Line: "The human voice: It's the instrument we all play.". #7: Jill Bolte Taylor - "My Stroke of Insight".

  19. Differentiate the Stages or Processes in Speech Writing

    The stages of speech writing mainly includes introduction, body, and conclusion whereas the process of speech writing may include knowing your audience and identifying a clear message that you need to deliver to them. 4. In stages, the speech should be structured whereas in process, the proper steps of writing a speech must be followed. 5.

  20. Speechwriting

    What makes a speech persuasive and memorable - and how do you write one? How can storytelling help political, corporate, nonprofit, and community leaders achieve their goals? What is the role of the speech in our politics, policymaking, and international relations? This course will explore the techniques speechwriters and speakers use, from research to rhetoric, to shape messages that move ...

  21. The Writing Process: 6 Steps Every Writer Should Know

    The last stage of the writing process is proofreading your final draft. At this stage, you're finished writing, but you're not quite ready to hand in your assignment. Proofreading is one last lookover to catch any spelling mistakes, grammar errors, typos, formatting errors, or incorrect structure or syntax. Unless something is egregiously ...

  22. Speech Writing Format, Samples, Examples

    Speech Writing Format, Topics, Class 11, 12, Samples, Format Class 8, Class 10, Examples Class 9, Templates, Samples; What is the format of speech writing? ... Importantly, this is an example of how the listener comes first while drafting a speech. The language chosen appeals to a specific sort of audience and was widely utilised in 1963 when ...

  23. 15 Powerful Speech Opening Lines (And How to Create Your Own)

    Analyze their response and tweak the joke accordingly if necessary. Starting your speech with humour means your setting the tone of your speech. It would make sense to have a few more jokes sprinkled around the rest of the speech as well as the audience might be expecting the same from you. 4. Mohammed Qahtani.