Creating News Features and Op-Ed

Three interesting facts: (Chapter 7 PRCA 3330)

  1. Feature writing requires right-brain skills:
  • intuition
  • image-making
  • creativity

2.  Feature stories are considered soft news rather than hard news.

  • they are not as time-sensitive as hard news
  • they entertain, provide background and give consumer tips
  • has an indefinite shelf life and can be used by the media when it’s needed, not just when it’s distributed

3.  Op-Ed Definition:  Literally means “opposite the editorial page.”

       Purpose: to present a variety of views on current news events, government policies, pending legislation and social issues.–to illuminate the issue in a new way.

         Writing the perfect Op-Ed:

  • Daily newspapers prefer articles of about 400 to 750 words (three double-spaced pages).
  • Present one main idea or theme.
  • Get tothe point in the first paragraph.
  • Use facts and stats to add credibility.
  • Be timely. The article should be about a current social issue, situation or news event.
  • Use active verbs; write in journalistic third person.
  • Query editors before sending an op-ed. It will save you time and energy.

Source: Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques by Dennis L. Wilcox

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