Resources

10 Warning Signs a Story Should Not Run

not teaching, still THINKING … Decisions to publish stories can result in long-lasting consequences, which we always hope are good ones. Sometimes a story is not ready to run, and an editor must hold it. How to decide? Here are 10 warning signs that a story should not run. And, we would add a note […]

Take a number — and put it in context

not teaching, still THINKING … Election ads. Full of increases, decreases, numbers and percentages. Whether you are consuming news about the upcoming elections or you are engaged in campaign coverage, here are some quick tips about putting numbers into context that might help. These tips are intended to empower you to publish clear stories that […]

Trust what you publish, what you read

not teaching, still THINKING … Skeptical about anything these days? It’s not enough for stories to be complete and clear. They also must be free of faults and shortcomings. The best way to look for these — whether you are a journalist or a reader — is to apply methodical scrutiny to a story by […]

Think golf. That’s it. Just think golf.

not teaching, still THINKING … Golf has topped the agenda of one of these two profs (you know which one) this past summer. So it is not surprising to reflect back on Strategy #3 of our “Think Like an Editor” book and to recall how golf is used as an analogy to explain how reporters […]

Credit: Use this checklist to get it right

Three elements in a story — attribution, sources and substantiation — give credit in distinct ways. Credit is essential to give you and your work credibility. Attribution tells readers where information came from; it makes the story transparent. Sources indicate that others — not the reporter — provided information; they make the story credible. Substantiation […]

10 easy steps to a better story

Story ideas come from a number of places, including your own curiosity. An effective way to develop an idea into a story is to ask yourself questions. But the key is to ask these questions at the start of story planning, not after the story has been written. Here’s a checklist of 10 questions to get […]