Class notes: Writing headlines and leads

Your first news story is due BEFORE class time this Thursday, Feb. 14.
The story should be a MINIMUM of 500 words and adhere to the following checklist:

  1. Your story should be fresh/unique and have a strong headline, a newsworthy lead and a local focus. Story should reflect timeliness, impact or prominence. Story should include relevant links.
  2. At least half the story consists of direct and paraphrased quotes from three or more authoritative, credible, expert (best available) interview sources.
  3. Story should use an appropriate structure and be accurate, focused, orderly, precise, thorough (no unanswered Qs), and flow well.
  4. Story should use proper spelling, grammar and punctuation.
  5. Story should effectively and sensitively reflect perspectives of all stakeholders, including any diverse populations who may be affected

To review in class:

Some headline writing tips from Poynter

And some even better lead writing tips from NPR

Review of WSJ leads

Paraphrasing vs Quoting – examples 1. and 2.

Safe House Coming to Oxford

In class exercise: Write your working headline and lead for your story due Thursday (this can and probably should change – but you should have enough information by now to work on a draft version).



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