Headline writing 101


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Headline writing 101

  1. 1. Headline Writing 101<br />Andrew Chavez, Texas Center for Community Journalism<br />
  2. 2. Types of type<br />ATHLETICS<br />Football coach arrested after championship game brawl<br />Charges pending in post-game scuffle that injured two<br />Duisvulputateultricies quam, sedvariustelluslobortis a. Quisquebibendum, metusnectinciduntporttitor, lectusjustocongue lacus, a suscipitrisusnullaeuturpis. Doneccommodoadipiscingest, necullamcorpererossodales id. Vivamusvestibulumleosedenimconvallis in scelerisque dui volutpat. Pellentesqueiaculis, arcu sit amettempor tempus, mi lacus eleifendturpis, sagittisblanditorciligulanecmetus. In quam nisl, volutpat vitae egestasquis, mattis non<br />
  3. 3. More display type<br />On the run<br />Suspect in fatal shooting escapes from jail<br />
  4. 4. The basics<br />Has a noun and a verb<br />Present tense<br />Active voice<br />Right: Council fires city manager<br />Wrong: City manager fired by council<br />Usually write in sentence case<br />
  5. 5. There’s more<br />Use attribution when necessary (except on opinion page)<br />Mayor: Budget shortfall expected<br />Budget shortfall expected, mayor says<br />Numerals are OK<br />Use quotes if warranted<br />Report: Officer’s actions ‘inexcusable’<br />No the, a, or an<br />
  6. 6. Fitting headlines<br />Make sure lines are at least close to equal<br />Police chief’s firing aXXXXmysteryXXX<br />Police chief<br />fired, cause <br />unknownXX<br />
  7. 7. Beginner’s method<br />Don’t write on deadline if you don’t have to<br />Read the story<br />Think of keywords<br />Seek out synonyms<br />Take a break if you’re frustrated<br />Make it a team effort<br />
  8. 8. Best practices<br />Grab attention<br />Don‘t echo the lede<br />Think how it will play on the page<br />Watch for duplicate phrases<br />Beware of awkward situations<br />Consider the fold<br />Don’t state the obvious<br />School Board to meet Friday<br />Make sure it accurately represents the story<br />
  9. 9. Spice it up<br />Don’t hide the news<br />Good: Smith ends campaign<br />Hidden news: Smith’s campaign over<br />Try a possessive<br />Without: Term of Smith not over, judge rules<br />With: Smith’s term not over, judge rules<br />Personify – occasionally<br />With: Last day of wintry weather ahead<br />Without: Wintry weather to take a break<br />
  10. 10. Examples<br />Virus prompts alteration in visitationsA gastrointenstinal illness could affect visitation at some local prison units this weekend, according to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.Visitation was cancelled last week at the Crain nit after 79 offenders were reported ill with the virus.<br />
  11. 11. Examples<br />Stomach bug may affect prisoner visits<br />
  12. 12. Ranking<br />Procedures to change for heavy trucksCounty road use will require 90-day permit, commissioners say<br />
  13. 13. Good examples from you<br />Making stronger tea togetherfor an opinion column on the tea party<br />
  14. 14. Good examples from ACES<br />Touch 'em allfor a story on a pair of 23-year-old friends who visited all 30 major league baseball stadiums in 50 days<br />
  15. 15. Good examples from ACES<br />Everybody plays, nobody winson a story about the All-Star game which ran out of players and ended in a tie.<br />
  16. 16. Good examples from ACES<br />Everybody plays, nobody winson a story about the All-Star game which ran out of players and ended in a tie.<br />
  17. 17. Good examples from ACES<br />This is, like, CNNCable News Network's latest investigativepiece: Find a younger, dumber, hipperviewership<br />
  18. 18. Good examples from ACES<br />Allergy season coming achoo!on a piece about the early onset of tree-pollen allergies<br />
  19. 19. Good examples from ACES<br />It’s Amman’s worldfor a story on Jordan cracking down on women’s rights<br />
  20. 20. Q&A<br />