Story Writing Assignment
YOUR TASK: Write a news story about
something that happened within the last few days. You
should be able to quote the sources. [You may choose a scene from a movies or TV
show, but you may not write about something you read about or watched in the
news. Please type your story double
- there should be a
headline that tells the whole story with a subject and verb--this is the
focal point of your story
- it must follow the
inverted pyramid style (the most important details of the story should be
towards the beginning and be less and less important to understanding the
story as the story develops)
- the story should NOT be
chronological!!! Use the inverted pyramid!
- the news lead should
include the who, what, where when, and maybe the why and how. Remember: the news
lead should be a 1-2 sentence paragraph!
You should follow the inverted pyramid format.
- must follow the inverted
pyramid the story should include at quotes from 2-3 different sources;
include primary + secondary + professional/authority sources.
[Person-on-the-street sound bytes are optional.]
- the story must be 300-600
- there should be no
bias; include only the facts
- there should be no use
of the personal pronoun except in quotes
- remember that this is not fiction; rely on the truth. The
story should be about something you witnessed or experienced. [If you are
writing about yourself, please write about yourself in the THIRD person.]
- The body paragraphs should
be short (2-3 sentences will very often suffice—approximately 60 words)
and provide details to "pad out the story." As humans, we want
to know more of the nitty-gritting details.
Develop one detail per
- Use the inverted
pyramid. Your story must pass the cut off test.
Grading Standard for a Hard News Story:
of lead: clarity, focus, engaging, completeness
of Inverted Pyramid: passes the “cut off test”
of reporting: fairness, accuracy, balance, completeness :
primary, secondary, and professional/authority sources have been interviewed
conciseness, active verbs, concrete nouns, telling details, readability
spelling, punctuation, capitalization, adherence to newspaper conventions