I want some clarification on the verbs tell, say and speak because they mean the same action to me.
For example, you can use both of these sentences.
He said "I am not attending the party."
He told he is not coming to the party.
I am not sure about the second one but in any case
He spoke he is not attending.
seems kinda awkward. My impressions are based on the common uses as I see and hear people. Is there any formal rule about which one is most appropriate in a given context for native speakers?