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Writing headlines Not titles. Basic rules of headline writing Never write a headline without reading the entire story first. If the story has a surprise.

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Presentation on theme: "Writing headlines Not titles. Basic rules of headline writing Never write a headline without reading the entire story first. If the story has a surprise."— Presentation transcript:

1 Writing headlines Not titles

2 Basic rules of headline writing Never write a headline without reading the entire story first. If the story has a surprise ending, don’t give it away in the headline.

3 Basic rules of writing headlines Draw headline information from near the top of the story. Build the headline around key words, those that must be included. Build on words in the story, paraphrasing but not parroting.

4 Headlines show action and contain a verb Which of these samples are headlines and contain a verb? Type your answer to #1 A.The roaring lion B. A lion’s tale D. Cop requires stitches after lion attack E. A dangerous lion F. Lion bites policeman

5 Are these the headlines you wrote down? Officer hits lion. (Hit is a verb and this is a complete thought.) Cop requires stitches after lion attach. (Requires is a verb) Lion bites policeman. (bites is a verb) Wrong: The roaring lion: Roaring is used as an adjective, not a verb, and this is not a complete thought.

6 Write a headline for “3 bears” news story The Three Bears Discuss the basic facts Exercise: #2 Write 2-3 possible headlines on your assignment page.

7 Possible Headlines Bears’ house vandalized Parents cited for neglect Child damages home Charges filed against girl for breaking and entering Other ?

8 Change these titles to headlines Titles usually do not have a verb. Change these titles to headlines. 1. The Three Little Pigs 2. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs 3. Indiana Jones 4. Tool Time

9 Possible headlines for stories Wolf boiled alive by three pigs Apple causes teen to fall into coma Scottish clans unite to defeat English Taylor takes tumble on Tool Time

10 Basic rules of headline writing When you write a headline remember: Include a subject and a verb Use present tense of verb Eliminate articles (the, an, a) Don’t use “is” or “are” Use comma to indicate “and” or a semicolon

11 Practice writing headlines Here is a short story. Write a headline for it. CAMP DOHA, Kuwait -- The battle for Baghdad began Tuesday night as U.S. ground forces entered the "Red Zone." U.S. Army and Marine ground forces advanced on separate axes into the swath of territory around Baghdad that is defended by the Republican Guard and has been characterized by U.S. commanders as the most strategically vital and treacherous of the war. Although still 50 miles or more from the capital, the attack brought the U.S. military one step closer to its ultimate objective: the capture of Baghdad and the toppling of the government of President Saddam Hussein.

12 Headline writing style Headlines do not end with a period Most papers use “down style” Only the first word and proper nouns are capitalized Most important stories and headlines are at the top of the page. Sample Headlines Emotions run high as Dole retires from Senate Eight local schools keep students indoors this summer Farrakhan praises Cuban schools

13 Headline style Do not center headlines Start headline flush left on column Double or triple headlines should be close to the same length Sample triple headline Boy wins new bike Teen steals prize Police recover bike

14 Headline writing ideas Try to arouse the reader’s interest Try to be consistent with the tone of the story Avoid awkward phrasing that is difficult to read Do not mislead reader

15 Write three possible headlines for this story. Brad Jones and Kim Smith always said the sky was the limit as far as their love was concerned. Last week they proved it by getting married--in midair. Jones and Smith and a daring pastor, the Rev. Charles Brown, strapped on parachutes Saturday morning and jumped out of a plane at 10,000 fee. The trio clasped hands to form a ring while the Rev. Brown conducted the ceremony.

16 Practice writing headlines Possible headlines from teacher 1. Sky’s no limit for midair wedding 2. Put on your parachute if you want to keep up with the Joneses 3.Free fall marriage performed 4. Wedding in the blue Couple says ‘I do’

17 Rules of headline writing Use acronyms sparingly--avoid alphabet soup Avoid using nouns that can be read a verbs, or vice versa Avoid double entendres that could be misleading Avoid awkward phrasing that is difficult to read Make sure headline is accurate and balanced Problem headlines PTA charges FBLA and FFA with theft Police slay suspect bound over for trail Relatives served at family dinner Man with two broken legs saves one from drowning Oklahoman hit by auto riding on motorcycle

18 What’s wrong with these headlines? Wife charges husband killed her for money Man who shot himself accidentally dies Boy chasing fox found rabid Andalusia girl improved after drinking poison

19 Enjoy some headline humor -Red Tape Holds Up New Bridge -Deer Kill 17,000 --Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead - Man Struck by Lightning Faces Battery Charge - New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group -Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft - Kids Make Nutritious Snacks --Chef Throws His Heart into Helping Feed Needy - Arson Suspect is Held in Massachusetts Fire - British Union Finds Dwarfs in Short Supply

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