As if speech writing wasn't difficult enough already, a eulogy incorporates a snapshot of the essence of a persons life in a single speech. Eulogies can include stories, jokes, quotes, poems, and memorable events about that persons life. There are many different kinds of eulogies and no one of them is right or best - it's up to you. Just remember to make it personally relevant so that the audience can relate.
Where Should You Start?
The trick to writing a great eulogy is to just start writing one - jot down whatever comes to mind as long as it is from the heart. You will be able to sort out your thoughts later in a first draft. You should think about what that person held as important in life, what they chose as their profession, and how they affected the world around them.
Set The Theme
In the end, it won't matter what theme you choose so long as it is done in good taste. The most common themes include a narrative story, a comical outlook upon the life of the deceaced, or even a collection of memories and poems.
Make It Memorable
The most essential part of writing a eulogy is to touch upon the life of the deceaced. It isn't just about how the person has affected you but what that person did to affect others. If you can, try to involve the audience emotionally. Make them smile, make them cry, help them pay their respects for the deceaced and be able to move on with their lives a little easier.
Prepare Your Eulogy Well In Advance
Now, mind you, unless you are writing a narrative type of eulogy that goes over the life of the individual chronologically, something that most people are advised not to do anyways because those kinds of eulogies can become quite dull and are often seen as unemotional, you will want to stick to a series of points or stories connected in logical fashion. Be sure to have a first draft of your eulogy proofread by a friend or family member before you move on to writing your final draft.
Practice Makes Perfect
Finally, be sure that your eulogy, like any public speaking, has points connected in a logical order. Moreover, because it isn't just what you say but how you say it. For this reason you will want to practice several times beforehand. Some people feel that memorizing a eulogy is necessary but this isn't the case. You are free to bring a flash card along to help you remember what you want to say.