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JOU8150

Course
JOU8150
Course Title
Freelance Journalism - Writing to Sell

Description

Freelance feature writing is a staple of magazines, alternative weeklies and daily newspapers. Whether you're interested in entertainment, sports, travel, business or profiles, this course offers a primer in the fundamental skills of interviewing, reporting, writing and editing - all of which go into creating the thoughtful, vibrant and well-constructed feature stories editors want. Please note:  We suggest participants already have basic writing skills.

Objectives

  • Improve your writing
  • Write a feature-length story ready for submission
  • Learn to pitch stories

 

Content

  1. Introductions
    • Discussion of syllabus, class goals and reading list
    • Personal narratives - Choosing a life anecdote and extrapolating bigger themes while avoiding dull chronologies.
  2.  Tools of the Trade
    • Setting up interviews and how to conduct a successful one
  3.  What Is Style?
    • Grammar vs. style
    • New Journalism - Spicing up the story
  4.  The Blank Page
    • Choosing a manageable topic
    • Outlines, leads, inverted pyramids, tenses, points of view
  5.  The Editing Process
    • When do you know it’s ready? First drafts vs. last drafts
    • Quotes vs. attributions
  6. Entertainment Writing
    • How to write intelligent criticism
  7. How To Get Published
    • Introductory letters/e-mails and story pitches
    • Resumes & writing samples
    • Personal websites
    • Working your way up the pay scale
    • Where the money is

Prerequisites

A love of writing

Method of Instruction

Lecture, in-class writings and selected readings

Texts:

  • Teacher-provided handouts

Evaluation

Exam:  No

Class Participation:  Yes

Demonstration of Skill:  Yes