Storytelling • Print • Image • Video • Audio • New Media
Print • The 5 Ws (Who, What, When, Where, Why) • What sources do we use to get the truth? • People • Written Documents • Observation
Pyramid and Leads… What is a lead? Journalist lead Comparison Question Statistical Anecdotal The on-line hook Quotation Controversial What is the inverted pyramid? What are leads?
Journalist Lead • Most familiar • Often see the 5Ws here • Why is it used? • So the reader can quickly learn the basics of the story • without being led through some diatribe. • So the editor can cut as much of the story as necessary for space if needed.
Comparison and Question Leads • Comparison Lead • Compares one situation to another • Example: • “My coworker’s 120GB iPod classic makes my 16GB nano look about as high tech as a block of stone and a chisel.” • Question Lead • Often misused/overused but can hook right away • Example: • “Could you survive a week without any technology?”
Statistical and Anecdotal Leads • Statistical Leads • Numbers used to relate to the article • Example: • “Thirty-six percent of soccer moms have soccer game applications on their cell phone.” • Anecdotal Leads • Most popular with blogs • Example: • “Perched up on one of the many cat trees in a tidy and well kept thrift store, Mudge, a pretty orange and white tabby cat, watches a middle aged woman come in with a large shopping bag filled with donated clothing. “I have a bag of cloths and a book to donate today,” the woman states as she plops down a paperback novel onto the counter. Melinda, the non-profit director, greets here with a smile and thanks her for the donation.”
The one-line hook and Quotation Lead • The one-line hook lead • Punchy single sentence designed to get the readers attention. • Example: • “Most people eat apples in the evening.” • Quotation Lead • Can be overused but still powerful • Example: • “Every writer I know has trouble writing.” –Joseph Heller
Controversial Lead • Controversial Lead • Used for persuasion tactics. • Used to make the reader feel surprised. • Example: “Scores of sex offenders in Anderson, South Carolina, will be corralled for Halloween tonight in a move authorities say is needed to keep kids safe as they trick or treat”. (CNN.com, October 31, 2007).
Why are leads important? • Leads give you, as a writer, a way to keep your “style” and “voice” but also options to express it in a way that reaches readers. • Make an emotional connection with the reader. • Choosing the right lead for the right story should be a thoughtful decision.
Exercise • Go to The New York Times and find an example of each lead mentioned in this Power Point presentation. Journalist lead Comparison Question Statistical Anecdotal The on-line hook Quotation Controversial • Provide the link for each article. • Hand in (with your name) at the end of class.