Saturday, October 25, 2008

Mindy Guest Blogs with "Writing Words to Speak"

While I'm on vacation I'm reprinting a couple of column from my Sharing with Writers newsletter. Mindy Phillips Lawrence is a regular columnist there and I especially like this one because in The Frugal Book Promoter I advocate speaking as one of the best (and most FRUGAL! (-: ) ways to promote a book. Here is Mindy's "Writing Words to Speak" and, in Mindy's usual fashion, she includes lots of resources so you can improve your skills:

When I was in high school, I didn’t know how much I enjoyed speaking in front of others until I placed in the Voice of America speech contest. Normally shy around others, I changed the minute I got in front of an audience. I became a performer.

Now, many years later, I have that same desire to speak. This might be bravado or a nasty gene that came from some unknown ancestor, but I love public speaking. Even more than that, I love writing speeches.

Speech writing can open doors for scribes in several ways. Writing speeches unlocks a world of promotion for a writer’s work. It can also become a career in and of itself.

Someone wrote, “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country,” the well-remembered line from JFK’s 1961 Inaugural address. Someone also wrote the unforgettable zing spouted by Governor Ann Richards at the 1988 Democratic National Convention in which she quipped about George H.W. Bush: "Poor George, he can't help it. He was born with a silver foot in his mouth." Republican or Democrat, lines like those are priceless and come from the pen of a mighty fine speechwriter.

Below I’ve listed some links to get you started – or to keep you going – with writing speeches. If you’re good, it can become a full time career. If you are not interested in pushing it that far, speechwriting can be a great way of promoting your novel or nonfiction book before book buying audiences.

“Brevity is the best recommendation of speech, whether in a senator or an orator.”
Marcus Tullius Cicero


Speech Writing

Seven Tips on Writing a Better Speech

Speech Writing

How to Write a Speech

The Art of Speech Writing

A Good Speech – Writing for CEOs

Speak with Passion, Speak with Power by Pamela Gilbreath Kelly

-----Mindy Phillips Lawrence is the author of the poetry collections One Blue Star and Above and Below and co-author of The Complete Writer. Mindy is a publicist and literary agent. She is in the process of researching a novel titled Alone is Where We Begin. Blogging at:

Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of This Is the Place; Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered; Tracings, a chapbook of poetry; and two how to books, The Frugal Book Promoter: How To Do What Your Publisher Won't and The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure success. She is also the author of the Amazon Short, "The Great First Impression Book Proposal." Some of her other blogs are and, a blog that helps writers and publishers turn a ho-hum book fair booth into a sizzler.

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