By definition, journalism revolves around being objective, factual and the writer’s aim is to communicate ideas in the clearest way possible.
Usually, this style tries to enhance the readers’ knowledge more than their imagination – the latter is something that creative writing is intended to. This is where our freelance journalism course can help.
However, creative writing and journalism don’t come from two completely different planets, as in fact they have a few similarities. After all, they’re both meant to be read by other people, so their purpose is to sustain the readers’ interest.
Therefore, we’ve gathered some creative writing techniques from our freelance journalism course that you can use to make your articles more interesting and engaging to people. Take a look below.
The hook. One of the most effective creative techniques is the attention-grabbing opening. What is usually known as ‘the hook’ – the artifice that draws the reader straight into the story – should always be in the first few lines. For example, you may want to write something around the topic: “There are thousands of children nowadays who don’t have access to education”. But why not using the hook technique and start with something like “Imagine that the cure for cancer may be trapped inside a child’s mind that has no access to education”.
Use words differently. In order to be creative, you have to take a step back from everything you’ve learned in school or during your freelance journalism course. Who says a noun always has to act like a noun? Repurposing verbs and nouns can give your writing a unique personality, and you can give them any effect you want. For example, “This city brings back lots of memories” can take a better shape as “This city is cobwebbed with memories”.
The three-act structure. This creative writing strategy is extensively used in fiction and can give your work a distinctive flair, while keeping your readers hooked. The first act is the set-up, the part where you set the scene.
As mentioned above, here is where you introduce ‘the hook’, such as some evidence that contradicts controversial news or you state something that is completely unexpected after the title. The confrontation – the second act, is where you talk about the different problems surrounding the topic you’re writing about and where you develop the argument using various journalism techniques.
Last but not least, the resolution helps you summarise and resolve the argument with your own opinion, by coming down on one side or the other, having weighed up the evidence you’ve discussed.
All in all, you can see that there are a few important similarities between these apparently unrelated writing styles. Borrowing these techniques from creative writing will help your articles stand out from the crowd and give your readers a pleasant experience.
However, if you don’t know exactly how to structure your writing, an freelance journalism course can be of great help.
See our freelance journalism courses