Follow these basic points:
1) Be open, honest, and professional with those you seek information from.
2) Ask a lot of questions of those you interview to get your facts together. And, if you’re inquisitive, you’ll also show people you are interested in what they are telling you.
3) Be observant and aware. Give all details to make your article interesting by using your five senses.
4) Just like a news reporter, make sure your details about people, places, and events are accurate.
5) Arrange facts in an interesting way. Your most interesting facts should come early in the article.
6) Make your article newsworthy. People want to read about something that is relevant and timely that they can relate to.
7) Be descriptive and create action. Remember, it’s show, don’t tell. Adjectives provide description, and verbs create action. Use words that haven’t been overused. Look through a thesaurus, if necessary.
8) A feature article needs to be more than just narrative. Include colorful quotes that reveal the personality of those you’ve interviewed or that reveal their interesting perspectives about a place or an event.
9) Be perceptive. Capture the delight or drama of everyday life or of what your subject matter involves. Even the irony of it, if appropriate.
10) Strive to create some reaction or emotion in the reader. What do you want the reader to feel during and after reading your article?
To reinforce and expand on a lot of what I write in my blogs, read my book, Beginners’ Guide to Writing & Selling Quality Features.
And, if you are interested in writing a column, read my blogs on writing them. I’ve authored the book,You Can Be A Columnist.
Be mindful that one learns by constant reinforcement.
Copyright 2011 by Charlotte Digregorio.