The Good, the Bad, the Way to Craft an Effective Speech
Let’s be honest: writing can be challenging, especially speechwriting. Whether a speech is for commencement, political address, or simply running for a school club, how will one go about this task? Will the writer focus solely on his or her respective audience? Will there be attempts to add in persuasive devices? Perhaps speechwriters will try to include both? Never fear, if the writer has qualms, they will subside once he or she reads the five easy and efficient steps one should follow while composing a speech. Step One: Determine the Audience First and foremost, the speechwriter must identify his or her audience. The writer cannot begin any part of the speech until there is confirmation as to who will be addressed.
Put simply, the audience dictates every aspect. For example, if the spectators are scientists that study solar energy, the speechwriter should cater to their attentions by creating a speech that revolves around the scientists’ interest. Moreover, once one has established who his/ her listeners are, determine what they already know. Do not waste time explaining concepts the audience is familiar with because that will bore them. Instead, think of the background knowledge they will need to understand the topic of the speech and its central message. Remember, once the audience has been identified, all of the other steps will fall into place.
To Recap: Audience: Scientists who study solar energy Step Two: Choose a Substantive Topic Next, the writer needs to decide on a topic that will resonate with the audience. In a broad sense, what is the subject of the speech? Try to present a new but interesting matter that will match the occasion so that the listeners will feel appreciated. For the scientists who study solar energy, the speechwriter should craft a speech that revolves around this subject. Remember, it is important for the speechwriter not to stray and add miscellaneous facts, but rather include engaging details. To Recap: Audience: Scientists who study solar energy Topic: Solar energy Step Three: Hone in on a Central Message The speechwriter needs to know more than just who is in the audience and the basic topic: the writer has to determine the focal point of the speech.
That way, it will be easier to filter out all of the varied information and concentrate on the facts that will support the purpose. With the scientists example, the writer knows who is in the audience, scientists, and that the topic will be about solar energy. However, the writer may select the central message to be about the positive impact of solar energy in North America. Here, the focal point is direct and leaves no room for inquiries regarding the type of impact. Remember a speechwriter crafts his or her speech for a good reason like to teach or praise the audience.
With a central message, the speech instantly improves. To Recap: Audience: Scientists who study solar energy Topic: Solar energy Central Message: Positive impact of solar energy in North America Step Four: Be Persuasive Next, the speechwriter needs to be persuasive. Although discovering the audience, deciding on a topic and central message are imperative, being a convincing writer is just as necessary. However, do not use too many persuasion appeals or else the speech will become convoluted; instead, add in techniques, like Plato’s appeals of ethos, pathos, and logos, when they fit the speech best. Again, with the scientists’ example, it would be better to incorporate logic, logos, than emotions, pathos, because the topic and central message focus on a scientific issue rather than a personal issue.
While writing the speech, the writer can use logos by including statistics from credible sources that are in support of the central message. Since logic is objective, the speechwriter’s feelings and opinions will be not be involved. Remember, logos is not the only way to have a persuasive speech; there are plenty of other methods one can use. To Recap: Audience: Scientists who study solar energy Topic: Solar energy Central Message: Positive impact of solar energy in North America Persuasive Appeal: Logos Step Five: Review and Polish The last but certainly most tedious yet vital step is to revise. It is crucial to edit the speech, once, twice, maybe nine times to make sure it is free of any grammatical or informational mistakes.
After a first draft has been written, go back and look for words and phrases that can be taken out. Removing these from the speech can make the central message coherent. Think, do some lines seem redundant? Can they be shortened? If so, cut those lines out, or just rewrite them. Remember, there is nothing wrong with editing the speech. If anything, this will make both the speech and writer stronger. To Recap: Audience: Scientists who study solar energy Topic: Solar energy Central Message: Positive impact of solar energy in North America Persuasive Appeal: Logos Revise! If there were any doubts about writing a speech, they should disappear.
Using these five steps accompanied with practice will improve one’s speechwriting abilities for good. Once one has trained for a while, beneficial changes will appear. Remember, if the writer puts his/ her heart into writing the speech, the speech will be influential.