When I first came up with the idea for A Speech To Remember I thought a lot about what I would call myself. Personal speechwriter? Ghostwriter? Toastmistress? And then while brainstorming with a friend, it struck me. The Word Whisperer.
Nowadays there are all sorts of whisperers—horse whisperers, dog whisperers, baby whisperers—all of whom use their natural instincts to restore calm. Similarly, I realized that I could use own natural ability with words to bring order to the speechwriting process (which can be stressful for many).
Crafting a speech for someone else is a truly collaborative process. It requires asking questions that will yield unique and personal details that will provide a framework for the speech. It requires careful listening to how the person speaks—everything from word selection to intonation to idiomatic expressions. Of course, it requires those “just right words” to communicate in an authentic way. If the speech does not reflect who the person is, then I have not done my job well.
There is a certain magic to word selection. It’s all about finding the right words and watching how they impact others. After all, the words set the tone for the sentiment of the speech, even if they are whispered.