Opinion Writing: Editorial Format

For Journalism A and EMAC Basics of Reporting

 

EDITORIAL FORMAT

 

LEAD/INTRODUCTION

Remember, this is not a news story. So have an interesting lead to hook the reader into your editorial. Be clever and unique. State your opinion so the reader knows where you stand on this issue.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Find the most important information about the issue and supply it to the reader. Look back at the history of the issue and inform the reader. Supply the facts – be specific.

OPPOSITION POINT OF VIEW

Identify who and what you are arguing against. Be brief (you don’t want to devote too much of your space to their opinion), but be specific and fair. As always, all of your information must be accurate.

EXPLAIN IN DEPTH YOUR POSITION

Explain, with specific details, why you feel so strongly about your position. Provide specific reasons. Do not “rant”. Your argument should be clear and easy for the reader to understand. Supply information which makes the reader think. You need them to understand why they should share your opinion.

SOLUTIONS/ALTERNATIVES

If you disagree with the current situation, what is a better alternative plan or solution? You need to provide a detailed alternative, which you think would be more beneficial.

If your editorial does not propose an alternative because you agree with the situation, you can use this space to offer suggestions to add to the current policy.

CONCLUSION

Wrap up your editorial by re-stating your position and why you feel so strongly. Leave a good impression with the reader so they will come away understanding your reasoning and think about your position. Be original!

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