Guide to Writing Articles

Guide to Writing Articles

All teams will want to share their results and experiences for colleagues, partner newsletters, local newspapers, internal reports etc. On the next page is a template that might help in setting up stories and reminding you about the different elements involved in putting a story together.

This is followed by a brief guide to what's called the “Inverted Pyramid Approach” to writing, which is standard journalistic practice designed to make sure that the key elements in a story are communicated up front to allow for differing attention spans.  Finally, a “Guide to Writing Game Reports” is provided, since development activities often involve competition at some stage.

Creating a Story – basic principles


Here are a few simple injunctions for creating a story:

·         Use full names in your stories where possible.  Also use quotes from people involved in the story whenever possible, to help bring it to life.

·         Try to use language appropriate to your intended audience and avoid too much use of jargon.

·         Try to find an exciting "hook" for the story that will interest the intended audience, and feature this "hook" in your lead paragraph.

·         Try to supply pictures or other relevant visual material to go with your story if possible.

·         Use names whenever possible. This means first names and last names when a name is first mentioned – and make sure that both are spelled correctly.

·         When possible, use quotes from people involved in the game, whether players, managers, coaches, parents or other spectators.  Quotes can (if appropriate) be sprinkled throughout a story – they needn't just go at the end.

·         Try to use language appropriate to your intended audience and avoid too much use of baseball or softball jargon.

Template for Website Stories

Title

 

Short Text

 

Article

 

What photos, logos or other visual material could be used with the story?

 

Where can they be found?

 

Permission for use of photos?

YES / NO

Signed off by Project Manager?

YES / NO

Does the story need to be published on or before a particular date?

 

Which topic or topics is the story most related to (select as many as appropriate)?

 

The Inverted Pyramid Approach

The Inverted Pyramid Approach provides a logical way to structure your writing so that readers can quickly and easily identify the most important information.  Writers find, when they use this approach that their letters, reports, proposals and other documents are shorter, more concise and focused on the needs of the identified audience.

The Inverted Pyramid Approach encourages writers to visualise their information as an upside-down pyramid, with the most important information presented at the top and supporting details – which amplify the opening statement – tapering away towards the bottom. This technique helps the writer “get to the point” and immediately address the readers' concerns.  Two visual examples are given below, one more detailed than the other.


Using the Inverted Pyramid Approach helps writers structure their ideas into a logical, coherent document – whether it is a short email or a long formal evaluation report – so the intended audience can understand the information they're being given. The Inverted Pyramid Approach is equally applicable to oral reporting.

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