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.
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.
American 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
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.
So we’ve produced our first piece of European Speechwriter Network merchandise – a luxury organic tea towel.
1) Son caractère inhabituel
Selon les dires d’Henry Boettinger, ‘De bonnes présentations sont comme des fleuves; de mauvaises comme des canaux’.
Dans un milieu de travail, chacun désire naviguer sur des canaux: alors que cette conférence est une descente en eau vive pour professionnels de la communication. L’un des délégués de l’an passé remarqua avec étrangeté la totale participation à toutes nos conférences.
Edinburgh-based speechwriter, Rodger Evans, wrote this speech for our autumn conference in Berlin.
1 Who wrote a widely praised book detailing the ordeal of being speechwriter for the Governor of South Carolina?
a) Barton Swain
b) Barton Fink
c) Joey Barton
Dr Max Atkinson is to be awarded a ‘Lifetime Achievement’ award by the UK Speechwriters’ Guild.
The award is being made for his outstanding contribution to the theory and practice of speechwriting and public speaking over the past 35 years.
On 18 May 2015, I travelled to Berlin for a speechwriters’ conference.
I’ve heard anecdotally that it was Lawrence Ragan the founder of Ragan communications in Chicago, who came up with the idea of a conference for speechwriters in the late 1980s.
I’ve got Lawrence Ragan to thank, because when I visited his conference in 2008, it inspired me to organise a European equivalent, and to start the UK Speechwriters’ Guild in 2009.