How long does it take?

As a speechwriter, I am often asked “How long does it take to write a speech?” On average, I allow an hour of writing time for every minute of the finished speech. Therefore, a 45-minute keynote can take a full work week of writing time. Of course, most speakers rarely need to start from scratch, as most have standard stories that they insert into every speech. But if you have no stories, examples, or illustrations already in hand, if you are hiring a speechwriter, remember one minute of speech = one hour of writing.

This point is covered at greater length in my speaking skills seminar Elements of Eloquence.

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Posted Saturday, March 08, 2008