Column writing


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Presented by Ms. Ceres Doyo

Seminar-Workshop on the Parish Newsletter
Bahay Pari Conference Room
San Carlos Seminary
13 August 2011

Published in: Education, News & Politics
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Column writing

  1. 1. COLUMN WRITING<br />Tips and guidelines<br />
  2. 2. What you’ll need<br /> - An opinion <br /> -Writing ability<br />cd<br />
  3. 3. So many kinds of columns<br />Op-ed Art&Culture<br /> Business<br /> Police Environment<br /> Fashion Spirituality Sports Books<br />Food etc. <br /> Advice Technology<br /> Health<br /> Consumers Entertainment<br />
  4. 4. My weekly column HumanFace<br />
  5. 5. 1. FOCUS your column on one topic if possible. You can begin discussion of one issue to invite reactions, so make sure your readers are clear about what they should be reacting to. <br />2. Choose a topic that you think will INTEREST your readers. Current issues usually work best. <br />
  6. 6. 3. Do your RESEARCH. A good op-ed column presents a well thought out and researched, informed point of view. <br /> <br />4. Use UNIQUE ways of expressing yourself. Present your piece creatively and in a way that will make your readers want to at least consider your stance and keep reading.<br />
  7. 7. 5. Grab your readers’ ATTENTION. Op-ed columns do not need to follow standard journalistic guidelines. Open with an anecdote, a quote, an example—something that will get your readers interested in what you have to say.<br /> <br />6. Opening with a story is great, but be sure that at the heart of that story is your ARGUMENT and that your stated opinion is clear and follows logical flow.<br /> <br />
  8. 8.  <br />7. You will need to EDIT and REWRITE your column for CLARITY, STRUCTURE and GRAMMAR. Your article should make sense to readers other than yourself so do not be afraid to rewrite as necessary.<br />cd<br />
  9. 9. More tips<br />Write with conviction: Put forward your opinion as something you truly believe in. Argue your case with conviction. Come down hard on one side of an issue. Be unequivocal. Don’t sound like a fence sitter. <br />2. Maintain your focus:As much as possible stick to one topic or issue. That’s one way to make a strong impression on your readers and convince them that your point of view is worth considering. <br />
  10. 10. 3. Understand opposing viewpoints:Be mindful of arguments from all sides. Anticipate objections to your views and deal with them with sound reasoning. If you’re not familiar with the opposing views, you will not be able to argue your points well.<br />4. Refer to facts: Your arguments, no matter how logical, will not carry much weight unless they are backed up by facts that support your position. Don’t overdo this by dumping too many statistics on your readers. Use facts from reliable sources.<br />
  11. 11. 5. Use analogies:Theseare useful for illustrating a point, especially when the topic you are writing about is complicated or technical. Simple analogies from everyday life make the issue more understandable and relevant to the reader. <br />6. Be critical:People like reading columnists who dare to criticize people and events in real life – not nameless concepts and policies. Name names as long as you do not libel anyone and don’t go overboard. This works well to make your column an exciting read.<br />
  12. 12. 7. Do reporting:It’s possible to write columns without doing any reporting but the best columns involve some form of reporting. When you report, you show that you were “there” and that you have a good grasp of what’s on the ground. When you write from an ivory tower, it shows.<br />8. Localize and personalize:Localize your story whenever possible. Link it to some personal experience – yours or that of someone you know. This makes the topic more real, relevant and memorable to the reader.<br />
  13. 13. 9. Be passionate:Generally, readers don’t like columns with a soft or passive voice. Come on strong. People want passion. They want to feel energized. If the issue doesn’t seem to excite you, the writer, it is certainly not going to excite the reader.<br />10. Provide solutions:Don’t just raise an issue. Offer solutions—yours or from others. Columns that criticize policies but offer no solutions leave readers hanging. People read columns because they want to gain insight and, perhaps, find answers. <br />U.I.O.G.D<br />(From various sources and personal experiences)<br />