In Praise of Competitive Rhetorical Exercises

25 April 2017

We have developed a tradition at our conferences – at least it has run for the last two. It’s an after-dinner speaking contest.

The idea came from the Dutch, who are great supporters of the event.

Renée Broekmeulen, who chaired the LMH conference in 2016, asked the audience to call out some words summarising each presentation. She selected three from each.

Then, at the end of the first day, she wrote them all down on a flipchart and invited delegates to write a speech incorporating each of the words.

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Seven Reasons to Attend the European Speechwriter Network Conference 2017

16 January 2017

1) Make Speeches Great Again

That’s what we storytellers do. We restore order with imagination. We instill hope again and again and again. Quote from Walt Disney, Saving Mr Banks

2) Meet Other Speechwriters

This is our 14th international event.

The best speechwriters aren’t usually corporate animals or political animals: they tend to be the creative types within their organisations.

An ESN conference has been described as a ‘gathering of gregarious loners’. Half the conference is about learning new skills, the other half is about learning from the other practitioners of our craft. Read more

European Speechwriting: Interview with Öznur Yüksek

5 January 2017

Öznur Yüksek has just completed a thesis on speechwriting. She travelled the world to find out more about the secretive profession.

When did you first become interested in speechwriting?

From 2012-2014, I worked as a press advisor to the previous president of The Council of Higher Education in Turkey. It started when the president asked me to write a speech for a graduation ceremony. Since then, I’ve done research into speechwriting. It’s one of the most interesting jobs in the world. You can hear speechwriters everywhere but you can’t see them. That’s just fantastic.

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Scottish Parliament to get inspiration from the White House

20 September 2016

A former speechwriter to Al Gore will deliver a masterclass at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh next month.

The workshop, titled Wisdom from the White House will give delegates some insights into how craft speeches like an American President.

Eric Schnure serves as an Adjunct Professor at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore where he teaches speechwriting.

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What does a speechwriter do?

13 September 2016

Many people are shocked that speechwriters exist. At first they think it’s a dubious trade. Why can’t top people write their own speeches? Later in the conversation it can be a problem explaining what we do and how we do it.

We asked members of the European Speechwriter Network to take part in a competition to come up with their own definition of what they do.

A speechwriter makes sure that when the speaker finishes, the audience applauds.

Harold Gordon

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Seven benefits of attending our Autumn Leadership and Communication Conference

18 July 2016



On 23 June 2016, Britain voted to leave the European Union. It was contrary to the wishes of the Government, the advice of most experts and the views of most leading politicians.

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Frans Timmermans fights back

11 July 2016

We’ve seen the Eurosceptics’ speeches: Nigel Farage and Daniel Hannan in the European Parliament.

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Don’t show up to a place with an invoice in your hand!

23 June 2016

mikelongAmerican speechwriting guru, Mike Long, was in London this week to deliver a special workshop on ‘Strategic Speechwriting’ for the European Speechwriter Network. One of the many highlights was his mnemonic for constructing a speech introduction.

It went as follows:





The Acknowledgements are the important people in the room you’ve got to recognise. Read more

Go to a Speechwriters’ Conference in America

30 May 2016

In 2008, I attended my first ever speechwriting conference in Washington DC. I’m now looking forward to my 17th!

There are three reasons why I enjoy them: it’s my tribe – I find other delegates are just like me.

I learn stuff – for example, at my first one, I heard Drew Westen, who opened up my mind to the links between psychotherapy and politics.

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Our New Limited Edition Tea Towel

25 April 2016

teatowelESNSpeechwriters enjoy ‘wisdom literature’ and there is no better place to put an inspirational quotation than a tea towel.

So we’ve produced our first piece of European Speechwriter Network merchandise – a luxury organic tea towel.

We’ve only printed 100 and they’ve been designed by Mirek Lucan of Lucan Art. They’ve been printed by AMP Merchandise.

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