Many people have read a newspaper before. They have large headlines with small paragraphs that contain very few sentences. However, for some reason, the first time I set out to write a news article, it ended up looking somewhat like a five paragraph essay. This is exactly what, since then, I have been taught not to do in my News Writing class.
This style of writing with short, to-the-point sentences and small paragraphs is hard to get used to at first. After a lot of practice, however, it can become like second nature. It may look odd as well, but when pictured as a two columned newspaper article, it seems more normal.
Last week I started the journey of writing my first news article for the class. For the assignment, we had to choose three different topics to possibly cover, and then with the help of the class, we narrowed it down to one. I ended up covering the Marywood Dance Team’s annual spring show that is coming up on March 6.
To start, I had to interview three sources that could help contribute to the article. I ended up going up with the Team Coach, Team Captain, and Team Adviser. Setting up the interviews wasn’t much of a problem, and I got them done within two days. After the interviews were done, I had to transcribe them to be able to utilize them better in my article. Typing is one my strengths so that didn’t prove to be a problem either.
After preparing everything for the article, the time came to actually write it. It’s very difficult figuring out where to start with a news article. Should I write the headline first? What’s going to be my lead? How can I conclude the article?
All of these questions ran through my mind, but instead of dwelling on them, I decided to just start writing. If it didn’t turn out good, I could just start from scratch. I ended up writing and rewriting a couple times until I came up with the final product.
Overall, the experience helped me gain a lot of insight on what it is like to write for a publication. I am looking forward to the next news story we have to write for the class, which I will be better prepared for.
Jonah Kramer is a freshman digital media major. In addition to blogging for Frame Your Future, Jonah is a disc jockey for 91.7 VMFM and an audio technician for TV-Marywood.