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Chapter 23. Speaking Off-the-Cuff > Lost in Space - Pg. 193

Speaking Off-the-Cuff 193 Lost in Space Novice speakers find that one of the most difficult aspects of impromptu speaking is staying on the topic. The longer they speak, the greater their tendency to drift into other issues. Soon, they find themselves cruising through the clouds. The audience, meanwhile, is having a well-deserved snooze. Speech of the Devil It's especially crucial to keep your speech simple when you're speaking off-the-cuff. The simpler your remarks, the less your chance of making a blunder. Very few speakers can resist the temptation to wander off-track. In everyday speech this is not a hanging offense, but in formal speech situations it can be disastrous to life, limb, and reputation. For example, digressions are rarely appreciated when people are reporting serious accidents, giving testimony, or proposing marriage. "How can I properly arrange an impromptu speech?" you might ask. Here's how: 1. 2. Quickly decide what you are going to talk about. No second-guessing with spur-of-the-moment speeches: Once you've picked the topic, stick