Reporting & Writing

News & feature writing

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Adriana Staszczak

Course Overview

The essential guide to writing news and features, this two-day course delivers a foundation in a range of writing styles. It covers the essentials of article structure, style and vocabulary. With companies and organisations focusing on content marketing this course will equip you to write clear, readable and engaging copy.

Who the course is for

Anyone who is writing for an audience  - PRs, marketeers, business executives and specialists who have to write news and feature articles, and those expected to share their knowledge and expertise with the wider world.

Learning Objectives

- Understanding the inverted pyramid style of news writing

- How to organise your copy to make it interesting and readable

- Getting off to a good start – the art of intro writing

- Dealing with numbers and detail in copy

- Different styles of news writing – delayed drop and narrative intros

- Outline of the principles of good writing

- How writing for the web has impacted on writing styles

- How do we define a feature and understanding the purpose of features

- Deciding on the best type of feature for your topic

- Understanding the diamond structure and how to execute it

Course Outline

Understanding the inverted pyramid style of news writing

-       The inverted pyramid, what it is and why news is written that way

-       Looking at copy from the reader’s perspective

-       How to write a simple news story

How to organise your copy to make it interesting and readable

-       The psychology of writing

-       Why the principles of good writing are easy to understand and difficult to execute

-       Why clarity and readability are the keys to successful writing

-       Thinking about the audience

Getting off to a good start – the art of intro writing

-       Understanding what makes a good intro

-       The seven summary of good intros

-       Selling your story to the audience

Dealing with numbers and detail in copy

-       How to avoid the “essay” writing trap

-       How to express numbers in different ways

-       How facts can get in the way of the story

Different styles of news writing – delayed drop and narrative intros

-       Drawing the reader in with a delayed drop

-       Telling powerful stories through people

-       Verbal visual – what it is and how it works

Outline of the principles of good writing

-       Why good writing is hard

-       Understanding the mindset of the good writer

-       The power of active writing and avoiding the passive

-       Inadvertent repetition, message v messenger, meaningless modifiers

-       Why plain English is essential

How writing for the web has impacted on writing styles

-       How reading on screen affects writing for the web

-       Creating readable copy and helping the reader navigate your copy

-       Tools and techniques to improve online readability

How do we define a feature and understanding the purpose of features

-       What is a feature?

-       Why do publishers use features – understanding their purpose

-       The dangers of features – why the pyramid doesn’t work

Deciding on the best type of feature for your topic

-       Types of feature

-       Horses for courses, looking for different ways to tell stories

-       The challenge of longer-form writing

Understanding the diamond structure and how to execute it

-       What is the diamond structure and why is it important?

-       The challenge of sustaining the reader’s interest

-       Dealing with the transitions

-       Delivering the diamond in an interview-style feature

Additional Information

Course Length: Two days

 

9:30am - 5:00pm

 

Price: £680 + VAT

 

Course Dates: August 17-18, October 27-28, November 25-26, December 14-15

 

Press Association

292 Vauxhall Bridge Road

London

SW1V 1AE

News & feature writing

The course has really opened my eyes to the carious techniques writers use to create great copy.
Wendy Jordan, Wheatley Group

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