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Headline Writing. http://pushingsocial.com/write-great-headlines-without-hype-gimmicks/. The Atlanta Georgian. Brattleboro Reformer. Key Vocabulary. Literary Devices: Alliteration : repetition of the same or similar consonant sound in words close together.

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Headline writing

Headline Writing


The Atlanta Georgian

Brattleboro Reformer

Key vocabulary
Key Vocabulary

  • Literary Devices:

    • Alliteration: repetition of the same or similar consonant sound in words close together.

    • Idioms: common phrase, a figure of speech.

    • Homonyms: words that sound alike but have different meaning.

    • Onomatopoeia: the use of sound to echo word meaning.

    • Pun: play-on-words based on multiple meanings.

    • Rhyme: repetition of vowel sounds in accented syllables

Why are headlines important
Why are headlines important?

  • Headlines should sum up the story so that the reader can get the basic idea of the story without reading the copy.

  • They’re read more frequently than other text.

  • A good headline will make the reader want to read the entire story.


Best headlines do the following
Best headlines do the following:

  • Clearly written in active voice.

  • Have subjects and verbs and clearly focus on a single action, thought, or idea.

  • Give an accurate, specific guide to the contents and importance of the story.

  • “Hook” the reader / give the reader a reason to read

  • ALWAYS check spelling, grammar, names and numbers.

What should be in a headline
What should be in a headline?

  • Make sure headline is in present tense and should follow subject-verb-object style.

  • Always avoid the obvious when writing headlines.

  • Cleverness is good to a point, but don’t overdo it.

  • Capture key parts of the story in a lively and interesting manner, but more importantly, should be accurate.

Guidelines for writing good headlines
Guidelines for writing good headlines

  • Put the major news in the headline.

  • Place a verb in every headline

  • Avoid the “be” verb when writing headlines. No passive verbs, predicate nouns or adjectives.

  • Use present tense.

  • Use last name only if it is a well-know figure. Otherwise, use full names.

Guidelines for writing good headlines1
Guidelines for writing good headlines

  • Capitalize first words and all proper nouns.

  • Use specifics.

  • Use only well-known abbreviations.

  • Don’t use articles “a,” “an,” or “the.”

  • Avoid being redundant.

  • Avoid over-doing alliteration.