I rarely prepare speeches verbatim. Have always believed that speeches should be somewhat spontaneous, and I’m mostly happy to just ad-lib away. Reading a speech prepared verbatim beforehand usually makes it far too formal and contrived. Though I do find that holding a piece of paper calms my nerves. For this degree show address, I started writing short reminders for what I was going to say, but it turned out more like written prose than speech. In the end, the script became a crutch that disrupted the natural flow of my speech. Should have just memorised it.
Related post: Heinrich von Kleist: On the gradual completion of thoughts during speech