PRACTICAL ACTIVITY 3 “LET’S WRITE OUR OWN ARTICLES”
Writing an article is no easy feat. We have a few suggestions for you to help you write an article quickly on a topic that interests you and may also be of interest to a larger audience.
What is an article? An article is a text that informs and conveys news of general interest while trying to fit as much information in as possible so that readers understand the topic better.
You can write articles to add content to your blog or social media accounts, or you can share your take on a story by contributing to your local paper! For example, you can write about your neighbourhood to raise concerns about the problems it faces or, conversely, to highlight positive stories. The angle of attack is up to you!
In general, an article should answer the following essential questions:
Who? Who is involved in the story?
What? What happened?
Where? Where did it happen?
When? When did it happen?
Why? What caused it to happen?
An article’s length may vary, but the most important thing is to help readers understand the topic. Here are a few suggestions on how to write a journalistic article.
There are different types of articles, depending on the author’s intent:
- Articles that report on recent news (briefs, wires, write-ups).
- A long-form article that analyses a topic more in-depth (investigation, feature, interview piece).
- Opinion articles that express the author’s opinion about a topic (editorial, op-ed, reviews, portraits, etc.)
For all of these, before you write an article you must find sources (institutions, other journalists, eyewitnesses, etc.).
IT’S YOUR TURN!
Once you have collected your information (and checked your sources!), outline the structure of your article. Follow these steps to write your article:
The headline is very important; it has to be short, incisive, and give readers an idea of the topic as well as the author’s point of view.
You can add a subheading, a short phrase to introduce the article, after the headline.
The beginning of an article is very important; it has to draw readers in so they keep reading. The lede therefore needs to tell readers why the topic is being addressed.
The body is the heart of the article. Always remember to separate fact from opinion! There is no such thing as an objective interpretation. However, if you look at all aspects of the topic, you can present it completely and let the reader decide for themselves.
The tail is the conclusion of the article. This summary can also give the author’s personal opinion as well as suggestions for the future (while still remaining on topic).
You can use the tools below as needed to help you outline and write the first draft of your article:
OUTLINING YOUR ARTICLE
HEADLINE AND SUB
The headline should be punchy. The sub adds onto the headline and sums up the main points in one or two lines.
The beginning of an article is very important; it has to draw readers in so they keep reading.
An article should answer the following questions:
Who? What? Where? When? Why? How?
Always remember to separate fact from opinion!
A brief conclusion of the article.
You can add visuals your article, such as photos or videos. However, you must always caption your visuals (a sentence describing the image and its source).
Do not forget to proofread your article! You can ask someone else to help you make it better.