Writing Techniques That Work
These points can help make your writing
more readable, understandable and acceptable.
* In articles and news releases, begin with a headline that tells what the story is all about. A good “head” lures the editor to read more. Always write headlines for the understanding of the editor . He will write his own headline for his own readers.
* Next comes the lead paragraph the story introduction. The “lead” summarizes who, what, when, where , sometimes even telling why and how. A snappy lead should stand alone and still have meaning. It should make one want to read further for more details. Writing a good lead often takes more thought, time and revision than all other paragraphs of the story.
* After the lead, additional paragraphs (called the body) fill out the story with more and more smaller details. Especially in news releases, use the “inverted pyramid” format, in which each paragraph gives less important facts than the preceding one. This enables editors to trim the piece from the bottom up when space is limited.
* Gain reader involvement by showing how one might personally benefit from what you’ve written. This is called “empathizing.”
* Use simple words, and “subject-verb-object” sentence construction whenever possible. After finishing a paragraph, circle all the repeated words. Then, select alternates. Scratch excessive articles and conjunctions such as “the,” “then,” and “and.” This “dead wood” slows reading and is usually unnecessary.