How to write a feature story lead

Setting a Scene, Painting a Picture Feature ledes often begin by setting a scene or painting a picture of a person or place. Is there no exception? A creative or descriptive lead This can be an anecdote, an observation, a quirky fact or a funny story, among other things.

Hard news lead example

It sums up the situation succinctly, giving the reader the most important facts first. Determine your hook. Understand the Context Keep in mind what your readers may already know about your story based on previous media coverage. But as in two other courts dealing with related lawsuits, judges have so far declined to hear the case. Tailor your words to those reading the post. People are reading your content to get answers, not be asked anything. The Nut Graph The nut graph is where the feature writer lays out for the reader exactly what the story is all about. Tips for Writing Leads Below are some helpful hints to keep in mind.

An oldie but man, what a goodie. Ideally, a lead should be between 25 and 40 words.

feature lead writing exercises

Just start. Ask yourself: Who is my audience?

Writing leads npr

It sets the scene without immediately jumping into the heart of the matter. Where will this article be published? Remember Olympic jerk Ryan Lochte, the American swimmer who lied to Brazilian authorities about being robbed at gunpoint while in Rio for games? But pretty soon, even a feature story has to get to the point. But over the weekend, the two combined and brought into the world a literary controversy — call it the Ferrante Furor of Question Lead Question leads do just that: ask a question. Keep It Short A good lead provides all the information the reader requires in just a few words. In predominantly Muslim countries, the job of making introductions and even arranging marriages typically falls to a vast network of family and friends. A note about the question lead. Look at the 5 Ws and 1 H. The Second-Day Lead Reporters who work a beat or freelancers who write about certain topics on a regular basis often find themselves writing multiple stories about a single event. They focus on setting the scene for the piece and use language that taps into the five senses in order to paint a picture for the reader. Passive voice is often the result of incomplete reporting. In those cases, include the most important of the Ws in the lead sentence and add the rest to a follow up.

There will be more on the nut graph later in this chapter. Using an Anecdote Another way to begin a feature is to tell a story or an anecdote.

One freelance editor I know suggests that writers include in their stories the most strange, bizarre, quirky thing they discovered in their reporting.

If you go this route, make sure to provide broader detail and context in the few sentences following your lead.

examples of bad leads in journalism
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How to Write a Lead and 7 Types of Leads