Interviews have to be one of the most nerve racking scenarios that most of us have to go through during our working lives. Chances are that you are going to have to go through a whole host of interviews throughout your life; some of which will be successful and result in employment and some of which will be unsuccessful. Most of the time, the success of an interview is down to the way that you handle it so we thought we’d share a few tips with you that will help you get through your interviews with ease.
“I didn’t say that.” “My words were taken out of context.” Two phrases no writer, nor their editor, want to hear. Quoting sources is not as easy as people make it out to be. There are rules to quotes and too often those rules are ignored. ” ” Means Exactly Said First big point. When you put a person’s words in ” ” you are telling the reader that the words within the quotation marks are written exactly the way the person said them. Word for word. No fudging. If you miss words or add words you are then changing [Read more…]
As much as I love old school – old school hip-hop, pen and paper interviewing, in-person interviewing, library research, etc., I have to admit, the new school is pretty darn fun too. Everyday there’s a new blog on how writers/freelancers can maximize their efforts to get work, get noticed and build a reputation through social media. AND everyday there’s another writer who is quick to say, “Bah! I don’t use all that stuff. I’ve got a website, a solid client list and I’m good.” Those poor souls are wrong. They are also likely the same people who wanted to hang [Read more…]
The Internet is an awesome piece of technology. The phone was a world changing invention, but person-to-person contact is still king. We humans are community-oriented beings. We desire to connect with others on a regular basis. We writers have become comfortable interviewing sources through all the different electronic means and this has opened up a world of possibilities for freelancers to contact sources from around the world without ever having to leave their home or put a note on their expense account. With these advances in technology, we have begun to move away from the best interviewing style imaginable – [Read more…]
Over the next couple of weeks, I’m going to talk about some oldie, but goodie elements of article writing that are still important for writers. It’s easy to dismiss some tried and true techniques because of all the fancy, technological whiz-bangs available to writers, but when technology fails – and it will from time to time – it’s good to have something to pull out of your coonskin cap. Do I sound 100 years old yet? Good. Pen and paper interviews. Important. Reliable. Still in use even after the invention of the iPhone. Why? Because technology doesn’t have your best [Read more…]
5. How do you write a great lede? The lede is one of the most important components of an article. It hooks the reader, tells them what the article is about and encourages them to continue reading. Before writing the lede, ask yourself “What is this article about?” Go through your research and find the information, statistic or anecdote that best represents the article’s information and formulate your lede around it. Also check out “Driving Rules for Getting to the Point with Your Lede” and “Lede On, Hook Your Readers Every Time” 4. What makes a good article? A good [Read more…]
In my last post I talked about breaking news at your blog – or in reality, most of the time, breaking second-hand news at your blog. Most comments on said post lead me to believe that many of you, like me, don’t try harder than necessary to break news, but instead try to put your own slant on news of any kind. That’s smart since most of us don’t technically break stories. Still, if you’re breaking brand new stories or slanting old stories you do need to find the news. If you’re at a loss for where to look, here [Read more…]
Heads up FWJ crew, Article Writing at Freelance Writing Jobs has a Facebook fan page! Come on over for great post links from FWJ and other great sites, stimulating conversation and an opportunity to ask all your deep, dark article writing questions.
Today we further our discussion on the difference between blog posts and articles for both the web and print by looking at audience expectations.
Deb had an interesting post this week: “Appearances Count Even When You Freelance” that had me chuckling and also got me thinking about how writers can shut down their sources simply by walking through the door. Freelancers often brag they get work in their pajamas and while that’s technically true, no one should interview sources in them – at least not in person. When I conduct an in-person interview with a source I pay careful attention to my attire and match my clothing into the message I want to convey. Of course, a writer wants to be viewed as professional, [Read more…]
Interviews are an integral part of article writing. An article won’t survive the sniff test if it doesn’t have a few quotes and information provided by an outside source. I’m still a firm believer that the best interview is the face-to-face interview. Sharing the same space with your source, seeing facial expressions, hand gestures, etc. is priceless, but most writers can’t travel around the world to interview sources so phone and emails help get the job done. There is a big difference between the two and writers should be aware of the pros and cons of both when setting up [Read more…]