Speech Writing – Foundational Phrase

In my mind, the term Foundational Phrase comes from the Toastmasters 1999 World Champion of Public Speaking, Craig Valentine. I discovered Craig’s wealth of wisdom as I entered the Toastmasters 2013 International Speech Contest and competed at the Semi-finals level. Now, in 2019, I’m revisiting how to craft a Foundational Phrase. Here are the resources … Read more

Should You Memorize Your Toastmasters Speech?

World Champions of Public Speaking all said they do it! There’s a raging debate in the Toastmasters public speaking community about whether or not you should memorize your 5-7 minute speech. Some commenters are emphatic: “NO MEMORIZING! You’ll look and sound like a robot.” Others memorized the opening and closing of their speeches, and casually … Read more

You Just Won Your Toastmasters District Speech Contest – Now What?

Congratulations on winning your District Toastmasters International Speech contest! Now what? Grab a copy of your Toastmasters District speech and upload it to YouTube so you can get it evaluated by previous World Champions, Advanced Toastmasters Clubs, mentors. Start developing your second speech, for Finals, right now! You will be presenting 2 speeches at the International … Read more

How I Prepared for the 2013 Toastmasters International Semifinal Speech Contest

Step 1: Getting feedback from local Advanced Toastmasters clubs Reality check! A couple of brutely-honest – and painful to hear – District 39 Advanced Club evaluators were concerned that my District-winning speech wouldn’t hold up to the competition I was going to face 3 months later at Semifinals on Aug 22, 2013 in Cincinnati, OH. Turns out they … Read more

The Painful Truth Makes You A Better Public Speaker

The first words out of Tracy Harrison’s mouth: “Well, do you want the truth?” “Yes,” I said, smiling wide (not having any idea of the honesty that was about to sledgehammer me upside the head). “I didn’t like your speech just now, and I didn’t like it when you gave it at the Toastmasters District … Read more