Good leads begin stories. Bad leads can finish them. If the first couple of sentences don’t make the reader feel helplessly curious and compelled to continue, your body copy won’t be read. Yearbook leads don’t sum up the entire article like newspaper leads. Instead, they give the reader a tempting taste of what lies ahead without necessarily addressing the main point of the story. They can tease, mislead, startle, amuse – anything that will invoke the reader’s curiosity. Study the following types of leads. Learn to write more creative and effective leads – leads that are real attention-getters.
The sports section of your yearbook will be some of the most fertile ground for interesting feature stories. Are you currently stuck and looking for sports story ideas?
Take a look at the list below and see if you can find a sports feature idea that makes sense for your school and applies to your yearbook.
Strong theme copy helps introduce your unifying concept to your readers. Learn some tips and tricks for creating the optimal copy.
An interview that lasts less than an hour can still lead to a ton of useful information and quotes. That is, if the reporter takes proper notes and gets the right details down.
Even outstanding quotations should not be out standing alone. Quotations are like grout: we cannot leave them out. Grout fills the crevices to make the wall or floor complete, but it is no substitute for tile. Quotes can fill in gaps in a story, but they cannot be substituted for a story.
Sidebars enhance coverage (whether traditional features or alternative copy), enhance design (packages the information into reader-friendly sound bytes), and belong in every section.
Step-by-step Instructions for writing the Feature Story
The 2008 NAA Foundation research mirrors the 1987 JEA findings and provides clear evidence that student journalists earn better high school grades, perform at higher levels on college entrance exams and receive higher grades in college writing and grammar courses than students who lack that experience.
Rewriting is the secret to good writing. Embrace it, and you will produce final drafts of interest. Reject it, and you will limit your writing to mediocrity.
When rewriting, read the story aloud so you can hear the tone and inflection of your work. Awkward working usually screams at you during this recital. It’s also good to have a friend read your story. Don’t hesitate to obtain objective opinions.
There is always an appetite for profiles because readers are always hungry to know about other people. This is different from gossip in that it is an insight into someone’s life that is different, unique, exotic. When it is reported professionally, this story seasoned with flavor and vivid descriptions is called a personality profile!