Stories from your personal experience can be a great way to illuminate your speech and the point you are making, but your life does not have to be the only source of stories for your public speaking as illustrated below:-
A speaker told a story in which Henry David¬son, a bank clerk in Chicago, saved $5,000 by thinking quickly.
This happened when a man came into the bank and calmly offered a check to be cashed for $5,000. It was payable to “Cash” and was signed, God Almighty!
Davidson knew at once that a hold-up was being staged in an indirect way. But calmly he asked, “Would you like it in hundreds?”
“Yes,” was the hoodlum’s reply.
Then, with about three times as much vocal force as usual, the clerk said, “IT IS A PLEASURE TO CASH A CHECK FOR $5,000, ESPECIALLY FOR GOD ALMIGHTY!”
As Davidson hoped, this unusual statement attracted the attention of another clerk who saw what was happening. He called an officer who arrested the disappointed thief.
The speaker had read this illustration in a magazine. He gave the name and date of the publication. The story was true. And it directly supported his point: Thinking quickly is a worthwhile habit.
In addition to personal illustrations a speaker can use stories he has read. Daily newspapers are an excellent source for human interest stories. Some of the illustrations in newspapers may not be quite as accurate as an income tax report, but by and large, reporters tell the truth as they see it. And their stories must be interesting or people would not bother to read them.
Human interest news stories which are most helpful for a speaker may not be the headline news, but more likely they will
be the smaller items, either on the front page or somewhere
within the newspaper. . .
When checking a newspaper for speech material a speaker should, of course, have the theme of his speech in mind. For instance, a speaker who is interested in making inspirational or “self help” speeches would probably have little need for a story about disease or suicide, whereas a medical doctor might need illustrations on those subjects.
There are many other sources of material for your public speaking. When looking and choosing stories for your speech keep in mind they are interesting, relevant and haven’t been over used