How to Write Newsworthy Leads


News is the information obtained and presented by the press, radio, television and web sites. Whether it is about people, events or things in the world around us, the aim of news is to inform and educate. The news should not be sensational or biased, but must present a factual picture of what is happening in the world at any given time.

It is important to know that a news story is not always objective, but rather depends on the judgment of journalists and their own prejudices. Market research helps them determine what will interest the audience, but does not dictate what is to be published or broadcast. News is often about people, which makes it interesting and significant, but can also be about events or things in the world, such as a hurricane, a fire, an earthquake or a war.

The lead paragraph of a news article needs to capture the attention of readers and then maintain it. This is done by focusing on the five “W’s”: who, what, when, where and why. The last of these, why, provides the context and meaning behind what is being reported. A well-written lead paragraph will include an interesting quote from a source, and can help to entice the reader into reading the rest of the news story.

Once you have the basic facts down, you can begin to organize them into an outline format based on their importance. This will help to make sure that all of the key points are covered in your news article, while ensuring that you don’t end up with too much information or a rambling piece.

You may find yourself adding more details to your news story as you go along, but it is important to be concise and avoid tangents that don’t add value to the overall result of the article. People are busy, and they do not have a lot of time to read or listen to long-winding stories. Especially with the rise of social media, it is easy for misinformation to spread and reach a wider audience than ever before. Be careful to only share accurate information, and check out multiple sources for confirmation of your facts.

If something is not going to affect your life in some way, or if it has already been reported by another news source, then it is likely not newsworthy. Amazing or controversial headlines are great for catching attention, but it is important to remember that what is considered newsworthy in one society may not be in another.