Writing Newsletter And Magazine ArticlesPresentation Transcript
Writing Newsletter and Magazine Articles
- Shortened form of newspaper and informational letter
- Small, printed (generally on letter-size paper ), or published through other means , newspaper or digest aimed for a select audience on a narrow subject, or for circulation within an organization .
Piece of writing on a specific topic of general interest, identified by its title and often by its author(s), and printed usually on glossy paper .
How to write a newsletter and magazine articles
Before you begin, you need to find out:
• Who is the audience?
• Who is the publication distributed or aimed at?
• What is the expected word count of the article?
• Are photos needed?
• Style of newsletter: ask for a few past editions of the newsletter and ask yourself is it:
- light hearted
Choosing the style:
Once you have got some answers to the above questions you will have a good idea of what style of article to write. Don’t just think there is ‘one’ way to write a newsletter article, in fact there are many different styles including:
- Personal story or personal reflection
eg. Years ago, I was treating a patient with severe asthma and discovered...
- Chatty casual
eg. Our meeting program was excellent and I am happy to say it seemed well received by all delegates, well done to the organising committee!
- Formal business writing
eg. The program aims to increase access to CPD by rural health professionals, in particular rural nurses.
- Academic and research style
eg. The results found over 50% (34/60) of participants had considered medicinal cannabis use
- Letter to the editor/ Opinion piece
eg. Dear Editor, I was concerned with the article in the November issue regarding workforce numbers
Interviewing and arranging quotes:
You may decide that the article needs quotes from a few different sources to make it more interesting.
Before making contact, you should ask yourself some questions:
• what type of quote fits into my story?
• What would I like the person to say?
A good way to prepare is to write two of three questions to ask the person , this will also make the experience less nerve racking.
Another method is to write a quote and email it to the person asking if you could use it in your article , also give them the option of writing their own quote if they prefer. This is a good method of gaining permission to use a quote from busy people that are difficult to find time to conduct an interview.
It is always best to send any quotes to the person for final approval, so they feel comfortable with the final wording and will not feel they were quoted ‘out of context’.
Ways of using a quote:
• “ Research is a booming industry,” Dr Ian MacDonald, Chair of ISAP said.
• “ Research is a booming industry,” according to the Chair of ISAP, Dr Ian MacDonald.
• Dr Ian MacDonald the Chair of ISAP recently said “Research is a booming industry.”
Writing the article:
A lot of people think that articles should be in chronological order, like they are in many business reports. However, if you look at newspaper articles you will find that they are not ordered chronologically but in order of importance or newsworthiness .
• Put the interesting information and the ‘real’ story in the first couple of paragraphs, and then you can add in all the other necessary information after this.
For example if you were writing about an IT trial in US for pharmacists that is part of a Canadian project funded by a number of corporate sources you would not start off with saying the year it was funded, who by, what the arrangements are and then put all the interesting information about the trial at the bottom. You would talk about the interesting part of the trial and include a quote from a pharmacist involved in the first paragraphs and at the end of the article talk about who funded it and what it is administered through.
It is always best to use clear, everyday language . This can depend on the audience, for example an academic article may use the academic lingo of the audience, but a chatty or personal piece should be in simple language.
• Don’t spend all your time worrying about the headline , most newsletter editors will decide on the headline themselves and this is often dependant on available space.
Always ask a colleague that has not been involved in the preparation of the article to review it before you submit it to the publication . After you have read it numerous times, you may be oblivious to grammar or spelling errors .
• Some newsletters may want to edit and change your story to fit it into the space or style of publication. Always ask for any changes to be approved by you before the newsletter is distributed.
Easy tips to have Informative and Beneficial Article
Step1 - Organize your thoughts well.
Most newsletters/ magazine articles feature the larger or more important articles and topics on the first few pages and place the smaller, less important pieces towards the back. Consider which format for organizing your writing is best to convey information to readers.
Step2 - Remember deadlines.
If any of the material contained in the write up is time sensitive, be sure that it is included in an issue that allows it to reach your readers in a timely fashion.
Step3 - Make the tone appropriate.
A newsletter written for a business or corporation should be more formally and professionally put together, while a newsletter whose target audience includes the residents of a senior citizen center should contain a friendlier, less structured attitude.
Step4 - Consider your audience.
Newsletter/magazine articles are ultimately pieces of information, so make sure that every article being featured is pertinent to the group of people you are trying to reach. Ask yourself if the article would benefit or inform you if you were a member of the audience receiving the information.
Step5 - Keep it simple.
A article is meant to be informative and straightforward. Be sure to simply and neatly relate all important information and facts before focusing on the less important articles that receive less attention. Decide before printing the article’s final version what the target points for that issue are and proofread thoroughly to ensure that they have been accurately conveyed.
Step6 - Deliver your write up on time.
If this is a regularly published article, its readers expect to be able to read it on a regular basis. Failure to deliver a finished article makes it seem like an unreliable news source and will likely reduce your readers' confidence in your publication.
Step7 - Ensure that any contributing writers are aware of deadlines, goals and restrictions.
Being certain that everyone contributing to the publication understands its ultimate purpose helps your finished writing be cohesive and well put together.
Step8 - Pay attention to any feedback you receive regarding your writing.
Noting positive and negative attitudes towards your publication helps determine the demands of your readership and whether you are adequately meeting those needs.
Sample of a Newsletter
Parts of a Newsletter
Nameplate The banner on the front of a newsletter that identifies the publication is its nameplate. The nameplate usually contains the name of the newsletter, possibly graphics or a logo, and perhaps a subtitle, motto, and publication information including Volume and Issue or Date.
Body The body of the newsletter is the bulk of the text excluding the headlines and decorative text elements. It's the articles that make up the newsletter content.
Table of Contents Usually appearing on the front page, the table of contents briefly lists articles and special sections of the newsletter and the page number for those items.
Masthead The masthead is that section of a newsletter design, typically found on the second page (but could be on any page) that lists the name of the publisher and other pertinent data. May include staff names, contributors, subscription information, addresses, logo, etc.
Headline - After the nameplate, the headline identifying each article in a newsletter is the most prominent text element.
Kicker - Often seen in newsletter design, the kicker is a short phrase set above the headline. The kicker can serve as an introduction or section heading to identify a regular column.
Deck - The newsletter deck is one or more lines of text found between the headline and the body of the article. The deck elaborates or expands on the headline and topic of the accompanying text.
Subhead - Subheads appear within the body of articles to divide the article into smaller sections.
Running Head - More familiarly known as a header, a running headline is repeating text - often the title of the publication - that appears, usually at the top, of each page or every other page in a newsletter design. The page number is sometimes incorporated with the running headline.
Page Numbers Page numbers can appear at the top, bottom, or sides of pages. Usually page one is not numbered in a newsletter.
Bylines The byline is a short phrase or paragraph that indicates the name of the author of an article in a newsletter. The byline commonly appears between the headline and start of the article, prefaced by the word "By" although it could also appear at the end of the article.
End Signs A dingbat or printer's ornament used to mark the end of a story in a newsletter is an end sign. It signals the reader that they have reached the end of the article.
Pull-Quotes Used to attract attention, especially in long articles, a pull-quote is a small selection of text "pulled out and quoted" in a larger typeface.
Photos / Illustrations A newsletter design layout may contain photographs, drawings, charts, graphs, or clip art.
Mug Shots - The most typical people photograph found in newsletter design is the mug shot — a more or less straight into the camera head and shoulders picture.
Caption - The caption is a phrase, sentence, or paragraph describing the contents of an illustration such as a photograph or chart. The caption is usually placed directly above, below, or to the side of the picture it describes.
Mailing Panel Newsletters created as self-mailers (no envelope) need a mailing panel. This is the portion of the newsletter design that contains the return address, mailing address of the recipient, and postage. The mailing panel typically appears on one-half or one-third of the back page so that it faces out when folded.