We all know what it’s like being trained. Especially if it’s a good course, with an inspiring tutor. You eagerly soak up the top tips and new ideas, and resolve to apply new lessons back at your desk. Then time passes, and while you are making every effort to control bad habits, and learn new,
Let’s try again to get rid of “churnalism”: the rewriting of press releases masquerading as news. Here’s my five ways to do it: 1 Look for patterns in the news flow. A company launches a product: who has launched a product like this recently? So instead of the intro being “So-and-so launched a new gizmo
This is the intro of the prize-winning news story written by Tom Wicker on the day President Kennedy was shot: “Dallas, Nov 22 – President John Fitzgerald Kennedy was shot and killed by an assassin today.” It is a marvel of compacted writing, with “who”, “what” and “where” all in there. And he carries on
#24 You’ve got to be a bit more canny when using hook intros than with a summary intro. Look for unusual parts of the story or details which you have seen or gathered from your reporting. Go through your notebook and have a look at the different parts of it and make sure that you’ve
A timely reminder that Google does not measure the quality of content. A story in the New York Times revealed that an online retailer had managed to turn poor comments from customers in to a high ranking from Google. Google acted quickly to add an algorithm to stop such a thing happening again. It said:
#19 News writing – it sounds obvious, but news needs to be “new”. Make sure you tell your reader something they don’t already know. See more top tips here.
One of the complaints that I hear from editors when I am training their teams is “they won’t pick up the phone”. Some journalists (maybe even many journalists) have always been reluctant to pick up the phone. It’s a lot easier to write about your own experiences than it is to track someone down and
#8 Advanced news writing – Use hook intros when you want to change the pace of news in a news section or you are chasing the story and can’t break it with a summary intro. See more top tips here.
Demand Media, a content farm as it is called, is about to go public and make its founders a pile of money. They have built a content farm which pulls together content from other sites and serves it up as How To lists and even full articles. USA Today is already using it to generate