Tips on Becoming a Better Newswriter

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Starting out as a journalist can be very tricky. You may have found the perfect story and have done all of your research and interviews BUT all your hardwork and time may be wasted if you write a boring article that nobody wants to read. To ensure that your hardwork and dedication to the story of your choice shines out, here are a couple helpful tips to improve your newswriting.

1. Always use killer headlines - You must, must, must capture the readers attention if you even want them to skim your article, let alone read the details. To make this happen, get to the point and make it interesting. Give them an idea of what you're going to be talking about, but make them want to know more.

2. Choose your stories wisely - Obviously, people aren't going to spend time reading your article if it's something they find excruciatingly boring and uninteresting. "Stepped in dog poo today" - nobody cares. "Pack of dogs attack teen" - more interesting. Now it doesn't have to be violent, it just has to be something interesting and/or have a direct impact on your readers' lives.

3. Inverted pyramid...enough said. - Your audience is pressed for time; they don't want to sit there all day and wait for you to get to the point. To make sure they get a clear picture, give them the juiciest details in the first paragraph. Save the supporting details for later paragraphs.

4. Mind your grammar - You want people to take you seriously, so try to use correct grammar in your blogs. No professional is going to want to read your "text talk", or at least take what you have to say seriously.

Hopefully these tips have given you a good start on your newswriting. For a different approach and more structural ways on how to build a good story visit:
Photo Credit: CreativeCommons, user: john_a_ward


T Israel February 23, 2011 at 9:47 AM  

Those are some good tips. It's important for your readers to care about what you're writing and for you to provide it in a catchy, grammatically correct way.

Katie Buchholz February 23, 2011 at 1:55 PM  

These are great tips! I find it very important for 'killer headlines'. This is something I struggle with and I'm sure many other students in our class does too.

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