The Elements Needed to Make Good and Interesting News
Reporter Should Always Be Responsible for The Accuracy of His News
Printed Newspapers are Still on Demand
A news report should tell its story in the fewest possible sentences. This is because both readers (for time considerations) and publishers (for space considerations) prefer shorter stories. As with leads, paragraphs in the body of the story should be kept short. Short paragraphs look better on a newspaper page and are easier to read than long ones
Conventional or summary lead - is used in straight news and this answer right away all or any of the 5 W's and How. Under this kind of lead, a reporter can begin with:
- Who lead - used when the person involved is more prominent that what he does or what happens to him.
- What lead - used when the event or what took place is more important than the person involved in the story.
- Where lead - used when the place is unique and no prominent person is involved.
- When lead - used as the reader presumes the story to be timely. And this is useful when speaking of deadlines, holidays and important dates.
- Why lead - used when the reason is more important or unique than what happens.
- How lead - used when the manner, mode, means or method of achieving the story is the unnatural way.
- Prepositional-phrase lead - the phrase is introduced by a preposition (with).
- Infinitive-phrase lead - begins with the sign of the infinitive (to) plus the main verb.
- Participial-phrase lead - is introduced by the present or past participle form of the verb.
- Gerundial-phrase lead - is introduced by a gerund (a verbal noun ending in ing).
- Clause lead - begins with a clause which may either be independent or subordinate; or it may either be a noun, and adjectival or an adverbial clause.
- Astonisher lead - this uses an interjection or an exclamatory sentence.
- Contrast lead - it describes two extremes or opposites for emphasis. The sharper the contrast, the more effective the lead will be.
- Epigram lead - it starts by quoting a common expression, verse, at least familiar in the locality.
- Picture lead - describes a person, a place or an event at the same time creating a mental picture of the subject matter in the mind of the reader.
- Background lead - similar to picture lead except that it describes the setting which may be more important than the characters and the events.
- Descriptive lead - it is use when comparatively few descriptive words can vividly formulate an imagery.
- Parody lead - it is consists of a parody of a well-known song, poem, lines and etc.
- Punch lead - a short, forceful word or expression.
- One-word lead - this is rarely used and is a self-explanatory like - March! or February!
- Quotation lead - consists of the Speaker's direct words which are very striking and which are usually quoted from a speech, a public address or from an interview.
- Question lead - an answer to a question which is the basis of the story.
Thanks to the following sources of facts and other info:
- The Newspaper Journalist (ICS) International Correspondence School 2000, Harcourt Learning Direct
- Basic Campus Journalism 1997 (specially the kinds of lead) by Ceciliano - Jose B. Cruz, PNU-DECS National Teacher's Trainer in Campus Journalism
- Writing for Trade and Technical Publications - The Writers Bureau, Manchester, London