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Chapter 12. Whose Speech Is It, Anyway?:... > Throw Out the Rule Book: A Look at G... - Pg. 97

Whose Speech Is It, Anyway?: Speech Style Many speakers select an important phrase from their speech and use it as a refrain. This technique is called repetition. If you have an important point to make, don't try to be subtle or clever: Whack the audience in the head with your mallet of repetition! Repetition makes a speech resonate, which makes it easier to remember and thus more significant. 97 A metaphor is also a figure of speech that compares two unlike things. However, metaphors do not use the words "like" or "as" to make the comparison: "The rush-hour traffic bled out of all the city's major arteries" is a metaphor. Hyperbole (or Overstatement) and Personification Hyperbole is exaggeration used for a literary effect such as emphasis, drama, or humor: "If I don't get this report in on time, my boss will kill me." Personification is giving human traits to nonhuman things: "This speech begged to be given." Hy- perbole and personification are like spice: A little goes a long way in making a speech delicious. Throw Out the Rule Book: A Look at Grammar Ever have your knuckles smartly rapped because you had broken one of the cardinal Rules of Writing such as "Never use contractions in formal writing"? Fortunately for those of us who are still massaging our knuckles, a lot of these rules don't apply to speechwriting. Contractions make your speech sound more natural. Feel free to cut out all the contractions in your speech--but be ready to have it collapse under the weight of its own pomposity. When writing your speech, it's best to capture the rhythms of spoken English. This means that you can throw out these old formal writing rules: