1. Meet the Speechwriters
Highly-educated, multilingual, intuitive, that tends to be the kind of person who falls into the role of ‘speechwriter’.
We’ve a cast of mind that embraces the political, the literary and the creative.
Our creative streak sets us apart in the corridors of Government, bureaucracies and corporations.
Then we go to a conference of speechwriters and discover EVERYONE ELSE is just like us.
2. Listen to the Speeches
At European Speechwriter Network conferences the presentations are of a high quality. Think about it, there’s no mystery why that should be. Your typical delegate writes at least a couple of presentations each week.
What’s unusual about the group is, almost everyone in the audience would be equally capable of delivering a speech of a similar standard. We don’t have hierarchies or superstars.
This conference is a turning of the tables. We spend our time trying to improve the performance of others. This time we get to do it for ourselves.
3. Stay in Brasenose College
Brasenose College was founded in 1509. It was where David Cameron, former British Prime Minister, studied. It was where Michael Palin, former Monty Python, studied. It’s where William Golding, Nobel Prize for Literature, studied. It was where Malcolm Turnbull, former Prime Minister of Australia, studied.
You can have the same experience as they did for three nights.
4. Larry McEnerney will be there
In 2019, Brian Jenner travelled to the University of Chicago for a conference. There he met Larry McEnerney, the director of the University of Chicago’s Writing Programme.
McNerney is famous for his YouTube video, The Craft of Writing Effectively which has had 6.9m views on YouTube. Brian persuaded Larry to run a day-long pre-conference workshop on speechwriting at the 2023 conference.
5. The Setting
Just outside Brasenose College there’s the Radcliffe Camera, one of the most striking landmarks in Europe.
Across the square, you’ve got All Soul’s College, the British equivalent of the Académie Française.
To the right, the University Church, where religious martyrs have been tried.
To the left, is the Bodleian Library, one of the most famous libraries in the world.
6. The Banquet
Everyone at the conference has the chance to say something. Communication builds community.
You can practise your own public speaking skills in our competition for the Fred Metcalf Memorial Trophy.
7. To feel European
Somehow we rediscovered the spirit of European humanism at our conferences, a spirit that lingers unconsciously in our educational backgrounds.
We’re in touch with an intellectual culture that goes back to Cicero and Aristotle.
We schedule plenty of time for conversations. Speechwriters are well-informed and we can get the measure of what’s truly going on in other countries.
And we can share our good fortune that we get to do a job where we are paid to make patterns with words that can influence millions!