To Pause or Not to Pause?

by Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D. on August 18, 2011

Here’s a quick tip to put into practice today:

Have you ever noticed how in conversation we often run our words together?  We might say,

OhmygoshIwonfiftydollars!

When we’re in front of a mic we often think we have to pause more and say every single word clearly.  I admit that I am always coaching clients to do just that.  But don’t fall into the pattern of pausing so much between words that your delivery becomes choppy. Too many pauses can kill your conversational sound.  Here’s an example:

Oh / my gosh / I won / fifty dollars.

No one talks like this, and that delivery takes the energy out of the phrase.

I was with a client yesterday who was working with this sentence:  He made a final and desperate decision. She had recorded it with a pause after final.  What I pointed out to her was that the word, “desperate,” has a kinesthetic feeling that is fast.  By saying, He made a finalanddesperatedecision, she could convey that feeling with her voice.

So don’t be afraid occasionally to run words together.  Itcanreallywork!

Want to learn more ways to sound conversational?  My book has two chapters on that topic!  Download a copy of my ebook, BROADCAST VOICE HANDBOOK, today.

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