TRANSACTIONAL WRITING - EULOGY GRADE 10 What is a eulogy? There are three terms involving the death of a person that are frequently confused… A eulogy is a speech typically given during a funeral or memorial service that pays tribute to the deceased. An obituary is a written announcement of a person’s recent death that is placed in the newspaper. Typically it contains a brief account of the deceased’s life and achievements. An elegy is a poem or song that is intended to lament the dead. So, how does one start writing a Eulogy? Decide on the tone. How serious or lighthearted do you want the eulogy to be? A good eulogy need not be uniformly sombre; it must be appropriate though. Some eulogywriters take a serious approach, others are bold enough to add some humour. Used cautiously, humour can help convey the personality of the deceased and illustrate some of his or her endearing qualities. Consider your audience. Write the eulogy with the deceased's family and loved ones in mind. Dwell on the positive, but be honest. If the person was difficult or inordinately negative, avoid talking about that or allude to it gently. Make sure you don't say anything that would offend, shock, or confuse the audience. Not saying something is often more powerful than saying it. Briefly introduce yourself. If you're related to the deceased, describe how; if not, say a few words about how and when you met. State the basic information about the deceased. Remember this is a speech and although you are writing it down and handing it in. it should be written as a speech. Give basic information about the life of the deceased, his/her values, achievements, interests etc. You could mention why he/she was so important to you personally. You can find a way of mentioning this information while praising or remembering the deceased. Use specific examples to describe the deceased. Avoid creating a list of qualities that the person possesses. Instead, mention a quality and then illustrate it with a story. It is the stories that bring the person - and that quality to life. Talk to as many people as you can to get their impressions, memories, and thoughts about the deceased, and then write down as many memories of your own as you can. Look for a common theme that unites your ideas, and try to illustrate this theme through specific examples. Be concise and well organised. Plan the eulogy before you start writing. Brainstorm all the possible areas (personality traits, interests, biographical info) and write them down. Remember a speech must have structure, particularly a strong introduction and conclusion. CAPTURE THE ESSENCE OF THE DECEASED.