Midterm!

A reminder that we don’t meet in class tonight, Oct. 15., but the Midterm will be held today online on the course’s Blackboard page. I sent you all a note to your TU email address. The exam should be filed under Content/Test and labelled as “Midterm.” The link to the exam will go live at…

Class Update, Midterm

Last week we did some lead exercises, midterm prep, and discussed more details about the upcoming Story #2, the advance story. More details on Story #2 in other blog posts. We also did the in-class Swimmer gold medal story, which we uploaded to Blackboard. The important note is that next the midterm will be given…

…more on the advance stories

The paper due on Oct. 22 will be an Advance Story, one that alerts your readers to an interesting and newsworthy upcoming event or opening. You see these all the time for scheduled press conferences/announcements, speaking engagements, symposia, exhibit openings, festivals, groundbreakings, etc. Look for all the news qualities we’ve talked about in case: proximity, timeliness,…

Update, Next Class

Last class we started to build stories, going beyond the lead. We wrote a short story in class and looked at how to order the details. Here is the short story  based on the summary lead assignment. Secondhand smoke linked with cancer in dogs Humans can be a dog’s worst friend. Short-nosed dogs of owners…

Advance Story

Here is the advance story sample. This upcoming assignment will be Story # 2 and it’s due Oct. 22. Below is the original calendar listing for this event. You’ll find something like this on the university’s news page, a press release, a flier, or as the subject of an email. This is just a starting…

Leads and Story Structure/Next Class

Last class we covered lots of ground. We mainly focused on summary leads and what goes into them. The 5Ws (Who, What, Where, When and Why) and How. And the occasional “So What?” We also talked about Delayed ID and attribution. These are all the choices you have to make when deciding what goes into…

Finding the Lead

New Yorker writer John McPhee says, “The first part‑the lead, the beginning‑is the hardest part of all to write. I’ve often heard writers say that if you have written your lead you have 90 percent of the story.” Locating the lead, he says, is a struggle. “You have tens of thousands of words to choose…

NY Times- Keep it Short

Nice article published a few years ago in The New York Times about the benefits of brevity. I can’t advocate enough the ability to write economically. Forcing yourself to tighten sentences and shorten paragraphs IMPROVES your prose. It works. You end up discarding the weakest links and leaving just the good stuff.