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March 08, 2017

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So good to hear this sentiment expressed so well. I, too, get asked for advice on 'breaking in' to writing as a career and speechwriting as a specialism.

Many of those queries come from people who - sadly - demonstrate a deficit of the essential skills in their requests and yes, they're often via LinkedIn.

If you cannot market yourself; If you cannot articulate your own proposition; If you cannot seek out the influences, or techniques, or opportunities that will organically improve your ability to find commissions … then you really need to think about what it is you’re trying to do.

Artists don’t wait for a landscape to turn up in their studios. They travel, they take their palettes and colours and paper with them. They set up in different locations, and try to learn something about their environment – and develop their own techniques – with every picture they paint.

What exactly does it take to become a professional speechwriter? Be professional. And start writing speeches.

Great thoughts, Merryn. And I love that last line. (My novelist mother used to say, "Am a writer. Get to call myself that, because I write.")

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