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Writing a newspaper column is bread and butter for many journalists. Looking ahead, it should be noted that there are a lot of things to consider when maintaining a column that are not directly related to writing texts. In order to meet the standards of journalism, you need to have the ability to create balanced, unbiased, objective stories. The person who writes the column is responsible for citing sources, reporting truthfully, and must learn to stay out of conflict. If all these difficulties do not scare you, and you are a good writer who loves communication, this profession is definitely for you.

Column maintenance

Learn to write well and express your thoughts. You must learn to convey emotion, persuade, gain trust, educate people, explain complex issues to them, college homework help online, and make your writing interesting for potential readers. Read and learn to write in an “inverted pyramid” style, which means that readers immediately understand what it is about and immediately immerse themselves in the story. Moreover, you need to learn how to calmly communicate with people, because you will have to spend a lot of time on interviews, which means you must be able to win over the interlocutor, because this skill will become your trump card.

Read the columns written by your favorite columnists and evaluate them critically. What is it about their work that makes them so attractive and useful to readers, why are they so popular that people return to them over and over again? If there are any style features that you could work out for yourself? Take inspiration from existing reviewers to learn how to showcase your own talents.

Remember the basics of column writing. Columns should provide readers with enough information without forcing them to read too much. On average, a short column article should be 500 words or less, while some journalists go as low as 1200. Being concise and to the point is what you need to acquire to be a good columnist. It is very important to check the requirements for articles in the newspaper you are writing for, especially if you are a freelancer and are not aware of the requirements of each publication. Most of them will give you a clear and concise answer about the number of words and tell you about other requirements that relate to the format, deadlines, etc.

Learn how to shrink text. Over time, this will become easier and easier for you to do, as you will see how you can shorten sentences and get straight to the point without overwhelming it. Keep in mind that once you've said something, your readers have already read it, and there's no point in repeating it again unless you want to emphasize a story.

The punctuation and spelling of a journalist is very different from everyday speech. You can also ask publications what formatting they use. This obstacle can be overcome by making an effort to study.

Be prepared to reflect thoughtfully on the topic of your review. You will need well-developed analytical skills and a desire to demonstrate opposing views on the issue you are raising, rather than just focusing on your own perspective on the issue. A good journalist is always objective, he does not seek to take sides. Put on your devil's advocate glasses when you're poring over an issue and you'll see how you've dealt with the situation from every angle.

You should not only raise the issue, but also provide a solution to the problem. Suggest one or more solutions. Reviews that criticize some questions but do not offer solutions are meaningless, because readers want to understand and get answers to their questions. Give at least one solution to the problem in the conclusion.

Find interesting topics that you can discuss to attract the attention of readers. Even if you have the right to determine the content of the column yourself, you still need to provide material that people will want to read. Find out what is trendy, thematic, modern and interesting for readers. It does not have to be some kind of sensationalism, you can make a good article by developing a sharp discussion in it and carefully presenting the material. In this case, you need to find an interesting hook in the topic, even if you yourself do not like it very much. When you feel stuck and not enjoying a topic, focus on getting your article well-received, making it more human so it doesn't come across as boring or disgusting. After that, try to abstract and read the article as a simple reader. Did you manage to make the review interesting?

Make accuracy your priority. Get ready to do research and learn as much as you can along the way. Talk to experts on site "masters assignment help" in your area of ​​interest to form the right idea about the phenomenon before describing it. Remember that the decisive factors in writing are not necessarily the topic of research, the primary basis is curiosity and the ability to communicate with people. No one will expect you to know the intricacies of cardboard box production. But if you describe in detail the process that the expert told you, with maximum accuracy, people will appreciate. Realize that there may be situations where you will be forced to submit material to print on a tight deadline. This does not mean that you need to do the analysis in a slipshod manner. If you don't have some facts at this point, delay posting until when you don't get them. You can publish a shortened story based on the facts you are sure of.

The more specific the topic, the more likely you are to misrepresent it if you don't worry about accuracy. Readers who own the topic will quickly identify errors, so it’s worth double-checking all the facts that you refer to in the articles twice, or even three times.

Keep in mind that companies, people, PR agencies and promoters have their own point of view on the problem you outlined, which may not be the same as yours. Treat them with respect, but always strive for peace of mind and learn to recognize deceit. Complain to them, it will be more fair than meekly endure their attacks.

Keep high-quality records of your interactions, indicating the sources you link to in your stories. Emails are very helpful in this regard. Also, always keep written or recorded notes on a camera or voice recorder handy. (Always ask your respondents for permission to record.) Especially if the column raises controversial or difficult issues. This is necessary so that you can refer to the materials at any time.

Fact-finding can also be carried out in the local library, the library at the place of work or study, through the Internet in magazines and publications. Many well-endowed publishers have access to huge sources of information on the internet, so use that. And if you don't know how to search for something, ask to be trained on the spot. Also sign up for newsletters, new articles and technical innovations to keep your finger on the pulse.

Avoid conflicts of interest. Sometimes a columnist may write about someone or something with whom or with whom he is closely associated. For example, about a company in which he is a shareholder, or about an organization whose services he often uses. In any case, when there is a clear or hidden conflict of interest, it is worth refusing to write an article or let everyone know that you are associated with the object of research. Learn the publisher's gift policy and the distinction between test merchandise and deluxe editions. In this situation, you, as a journalist, in order to maintain your integrity and decency in the eyes of readers, need to let them know that you are extremely open with them and do not try to hide something or lie to them. Ask yourself: “How would my readers feel if they found out that I was involved in this story in any way, but did not show it? And when in doubt, talk to fellow journalists and your editors who can help you make an objective decision.

Be clear and concise about citing sources in your stories. While writing a newspaper column, no one wants to read an article about a tennis match with a bunch of "he" or "she" pronouns. Find out who you are writing about and whether their way of talking is appropriate for the occasion. By presenting to readers the reason why the person you are quoting has the authority to speak on this or that issue, you form in them a sense of the reliability of the source, and they begin to believe his words.

Sometimes you may have situations where you need to protect the source. In this case, someone will provide you with information, but prefer to remain incognito. In this case, you will need to explain to the readers that the source wished to remain anonymous in order to keep his job/family/position and so on, but at the same time you will need to convince the reader that the source is reliable. And after that, you should be ready to protect this source in the future.

Use original text. The accusation of plagiarism is extremely undesirable for people who make a living by writing. If you feel like you can't write something due to tight deadlines, you can buy thesis, no interesting topic, and no other pressing issues, be honest with your editor and ask for another topic or a break to cool down. Fight your desire and take action to restore originality, even if you start to feel overwhelmed and exhausted. Make originality your thing.

Explore sources. As well as you are familiar with the primary sources, make sure you know the secondary sources from books, newspapers, magazines, and so on, and include footnotes on them. Also pay attention to the length of citations so that your career does not start with offenses that relate to the field of copyright.

If you're a freelancer, you'll have to dip your toes into finding publications for which you'll write columns. In this case, the following is recommended:

  • Do your research and make a list of newspapers you would like to work with. Contact them and ask if they would like to publish your articles or if they are looking for other articles on topics you could write about.

*Prepare an example of your writing and cover letter. Send it and the example to the editor for initial contact.

  • *Be prepared for rejection. You can go to a hundred newspapers and get rejected everywhere. But there is also a saying that the first meeting can be a jackpot. Rejection is an integral part of writing. If you are not accepted, do not give up. Keep writing.

Every writer has their own unique style. Do not try to copy the style of other authors, you should decide on your own.

You can learn how to become a columnist by being on the editorial board of the school newspaper, a publishing club or circle, or just for fun, you can start publishing a newspaper for family and friends to start with. And if you want to expand your skills, you can start submitting your papers to real newspapers in the hope that they will publish your article.

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