You are previewing The Lost Art of the Great Speech: How to Write It * How to Deliver It.
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The Lost Art of the Great Speech: How to Write It * How to Deliver It

Book Description

Splashy slides, confident body language, and a lot of eye contact are fine and well. But if a speech is rambling, illogical, or just plain boring, the impact will be lost. Now everyone can learn to give powerful, on-target speeches that capture an audience's attention and drive home a message. The key is not just in the delivery techniques, but in tapping into the power of language.

Prepared by an award-winning writer, this authoritative speech-writing guide covers every essential element of a great speech, including outlining and organizing, beginning with a bang, making use of action verbs and vivid nouns, and handling questions from the audience. Plus, the book includes excerpts from some of history's most memorable speeches-eloquent words to contemplate and emulate.

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. Also by Richard Dowis (with Richard Lederer)
  3. Foreword
  4. Opportunity Knocks
    1. A holistic approach
    2. A logical sequence
    3. Make a speech? Me?
    4. You're not alone
    5. You gotta believe
    6. Carpe diem
    7. Write better
    8. Other benefits
    9. Speakers, speech writers in short supply
    10. But it ain't easy, folks
    11. Read and listen
  5. Before You Speak
    1. Some red flags
    2. Who's on first?
    3. A definite maybe
    4. Control the topic
    5. Topic criteria
    6. Decide on the purpose
    7. Is the time right?
    8. Don't assume anything
    9. Know the organization
    10. More devilish details
  6. Preparing to Write
    1. Should speeches be written?
    2. Defense of written speeches
    3. Business benefits
    4. Research: the first step
    5. Writing for someone else
    6. Brainstorming: a useful technique
    7. Why am I doing this?
    8. The speech writer's road map
    9. Identify the thesis
  7. Outlining and Organizing
    1. Developing the outline
    2. Organizing the speech
    3. Working in thought modules
  8. Beginning Well
    1. Formal vs. informal
    2. What an opening must accomplish
    3. Types of openings
  9. The Best of References
    1. Location references
    2. Personal references
    3. Literary references
    4. Everybody talks about the weather
    5. New twists
    6. Wisdom in the funnies
    7. Every day is special
  10. Watch Your Language
    1. The power of simplicity
    2. Make language work for you
  11. Write It Right, Say It Right
    1. Advise/inform
    2. Affect/effect
    3. Aggravate/irritate
    4. Alternate/alternative
    5. Amount/number
    6. Appraise/apprise
    7. Aren't I?
    8. Assure/ensure/insure
    9. Averse/adverse
    10. Bad/badly
    11. Between/among
    12. Compare to/compare with
    13. Comprise/compose
    14. Consensus
    15. Convince/persuade
    16. Could care less
    17. Criterion/criteria
    18. Different from/different than
    19. Disinterested/uninterested
    20. Enormity/enormousness
    21. Feasible/possible/viable
    22. Few/less
    23. Flaunt/flout
    24. Founder/flounder
    25. Further/farther
    26. Graduated/graduated from/was graduated
    27. Hopefully
    28. Imply/infer
    29. Important/importantly
    30. In behalf of/on behalf of
    31. Liable/likely
    32. Lie/lay
    33. Literally/figuratively
    34. Loathe/loath
    35. Mobile/movable
    36. None is/none are
    37. Prescribe/proscribe
    38. Sewerage/sewage
    39. Shall/will
    40. Tandem/parallel
    41. That/which
    42. Those kinds/that kind
    43. Ultimate/penultimate
    44. Whom/who
    45. "The Name American Must Always Exalt Pride"
  12. ''Secrets'' of the Pros
    1. The rule of three
    2. Anaphora: repetition that doesn't bore
    3. Tongue-twisting repetition
    4. Antithesis
    5. Similes tell it ''like'' it is
    6. Metaphors evoke powerful images
    7. Analogies help explain
    8. Telling it like it isn't
    9. Surprise! Surprise!
    10. From here to there
  13. Wisdom of the Ages
    1. In others' words
    2. Credit where credit is due
    3. Sources aplenty
    4. How to use quotes
    5. Indirect quotes
  14. Get Personal
    1. What makes a suitable anecdote?
    2. To be (funny) or not to be
    3. Why people laugh
    4. Humor with a purpose
    5. Some do's and don'ts
  15. Statistics and Other Lies
    1. Make them memorable
    2. Make them understandable
    3. Anecdotes can help
    4. Visuals? Maybe
    5. Use visuals effectively
  16. Closing the Speech
    1. Types of closings
    2. Closings in action
  17. ''I have the honor to present . . .''
    1. The sad story of Roger
    2. Purposes of the introduction
    3. Some do's and don'ts
    4. Some noteworthy intros
  18. More Than Words Can Say
    1. Speakers use it, too
    2. Getting to know you
    3. The eyes have it
    4. Pauses that refresh
    5. The way you look
    6. The way you sound
    7. Pronounce it right
  19. The Final Stages
    1. Editors-R-Everybody
    2. Let it rest
    3. Editing your speech
    4. High-tech help
    5. Preparing for delivery
    6. None but the braveā€”or foolish
    7. Speaking from notes or an outline
    8. How to practice effectively
  20. And So to Speak
    1. A personal experience
    2. You can overcome
    3. Healthy nervousness?
    4. Leave nothing to chance
    5. And now for a few questions
    6. Business benefits
    7. Opportunities abound
    8. The right messages
    9. Leveraging the speech
    10. The speech in print
    11. What's in a name? Plenty
    12. Title sources
  21. An Editing Checklist for Speech Writers
    1. Editing for content
    2. Editing for organization
    3. Editing for style
    4. Editing for language
    5. Editing for grammar and usage
  22. Resources for Speakers and Speech Writers
    1. Publications and services
    2. Other publications and services
    3. Anecdotes and quotations
    4. Speech anthologies
    5. Computer resources
    6. Audio and video
    7. Useful books