This episode explores the complexities of writing feature stories. Before class: ask students to bring some examples of feature stories that they particularly liked – perhaps a personality profile, or a story about an anniversary.
Here are some questions to ask in class.
- Let’s talk about this idea of a beginning, a middle and an end. Is that how you approach feature stories? Or do you use some other kind of a method?
- Give me an example of a feature story that you wrote, where you didn’t have a news peg. What was the reason that you had to write it?
- What’s the philosophy that you take when it comes to quotes or soundbites? What are you looking for when you quote someone, or use sound, rather than just paraphrasing?
- Everybody runs into the problem of running long, either in word length or on the air. Let’s talk about some ways to decide what to keep and what to cut.
- Now, go over the feature stories that the students brought to class. What did they like about them. And now, with these new ideas, what would they change?