How to Write a Great Newspaper Article We read and are influenced by newspapers on a daily basis. Newspapers provide information on current events and issues, providing comprehensive detailed news reports with background information, interpretation and analysis. Newspapers also provide entertainment and are a reference for television, sport results, movie listings, community events and weather reports.
Newspapers use pictures and captivating headlines to draw in readers and hold their attention. Writing a great newspaper article requires an informative and persuasive language including emotive words, imagery and rhetorical questions.The following hints, tips and ideas will help you write a great newspaper article for your local newspaper, a school assignment or just for fun.
Purpose – The Aim of a Newspaper Article Newspaper articles provide information on newsworthy topics, this is any event or issue of importance to the majority of readers. News articles provide the reader with all the facts about this issue or event including who, what, where, when, why and how. Statements, comments and opinions from experts or people involved are also included.
Types of Newspaper ArticlesNewsworthy topics will vary according to the newspaper’s audience. A national newspaper will report on national issues like finance, war and politics. On the other hand a local community newspaper would report on actions and events in the area. Local newspapers tend to lean towards emotional stories, people are more interested in a local minor event then a distant disaster. A major news report is put on the front page with a big headline and a large picture.
These major stories will often have smaller related background stories which will sometimes run for several pages.Lesser stories are placed in the newspaper based on their importance (more important news at the front) or placed based on category (world news, sports, finance). Structure The structure of a newspaper article is often compared to an inverted triangle with the most important details at the top of the article, with the least important information placed at the end of the article. It is important to keep each paragraph as independent as possible as paragraphs are usually cut your fit in pictures and advertisements.
Don’t forget that newspaper articles are not written in chronological order. A newspaper article includes the following (in order): 1. Headline and by-line (reporter’s name & picture). 2.
Opening paragraph (introduction) of about 25-40 words in length and provides the most important and interesting news first while answering who, what, where, when (how and why are often reserved for later). 3. Further short paragraphs of about 30-40 words, each one has a main idea and different fact. They may also include quotes from people involved or experts. .
Details are given in order of importance, with the least important details at the end of the article, this allows reader’s to skim over the start of the article to gain the essential facts before deciding to read on. 5. At the end of a newspaper article the facts and opinions are summarized, detailing the issue or event.
Language Features – Newspaper Article Newspaper Articles combine the following language features to inform, entertain and persuade. •Clear and concise writing. •Are written in 3rd person. Can use an active or passive voice, depending on the focus and which is more engaging for the reader.
•Should be factual and accurate. •Should include quotes, comments, opinions, statements and observations from people involved or experts on the topic. •Give people labels so that the reader knows who they are straight away, for example: “the Minister, Mr. Martin”. •Should avoid racist, sexist or religious slurs.
•Should be accurate and balanced (provide facts supporting both sides of the issue). Language of Newspaper VisualsHeadlines use size, bold, capitals, different font styles, underlining and sometimes color to attract reader’s attention to the newspaper article that follows. The importance of the article is generally related the size of the headline, with more important articles having bigger and bolder headlines.
Photographs, illustrations, graphs, graphics and maps are used alongside newspaper articles to help present complex information as well as add interest and color. RHETORIC EXPRESSIONS IN NEWSPAPERS Traditionally, rhetoric has been concerned with the art of persuasion.Plato defined rhetoric as the winning of men’s minds by words. For Aristotle, rhetoric was the faculty of discerning the possible means of persuasion in each case. The new rhetoric is also concerned with the processes of persuasion. It is concerned with the description and analysis of the processes of persuasion, and is based on psychology. Rhetoric expressions, which are characteristic of a departure from the ordinary form of expressions or ordinary course of ideas, are occasionally used in newspaper headlines to achieve certain objectives.
SOME IMPORTANT DEVICES OF EXPRESSIONSFigurative usages like personification (“representation of a thing or abstraction as a person or by the human form” such as in expressions that personify wisdom as a woman), simile (“a figure of speech comparing two unlike things” such as the expression cheeks like roses), metaphor (“a figure of speech in which a word or phrase literally denoting one kind of object or idea is used in place of another to suggest a likeness or analogy between them” as in the expression drowning in money), metonymy (a figure of speech consisting of the use of the name of one thing for that of another of which it is an attribute or with which it is associated, as in the expression “lands belonging to the crown”), euphemism (“the substitution of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant”), antithesis (the rhetorical contrast of ideas by means of parallel arrangements of words, clauses or sentences, as in “action, not words,” “they promised freedom and provided slavery”), oxymoron (a combination of contradictory or incongruous words such as the expression cruel kindness), irony, pun, structural ambiguity, transferred epithet, hyperbole, and litotes (understatement in which an affirmative is expressed by the negative of the contrary as in “not a bad singer,” “not unhappy,” etc. ) are found to be commonly used.