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Q. I'm keen to make a speech at our wedding breakfast, but I'm no public speaker! What can you advise?
A. Hannah O'Donnell says: There are two key questions to ask yourself when you're performing a speech of any kind. The first is: who do I know in the audience? These are the people who are going to want your speech to go well for you. Look them in the eyes as you're talking and speak to them directly. You'll find it's less daunting than talking to a room full of strangers.
The second question is: what do you want to say? I don't mean the specific story you want to tell or which poem you're reading, but if you could boil your speech down into one sentence, what would it be? For example, the best man's speech is about embarrassing one half of the couple while praising the other. A father's speech involves thanking the guests and bestowing some wisdom. When writing yours, consider the one message you want to share and work from there. This will help you to keep it succinct and allow your personality to shine through.