News is information about events that affect the lives of a community or society. It can be about politics, crime or sports. Newspapers, magazines and radio broadcasts carry news about current affairs as well as historical events. News articles are usually short, to the point and written in a formal tone. They may contain opinions, but the statements should be attributed to a source that has been vetted.
News stories are primarily concerned with the human element. People reacting to and analyzing the effects of an event or news item can be very interesting. A news article that includes a human angle will often be more compelling than a dry report of the facts alone. A news article can also provide entertainment through a humorous treatment or witty headlines. The scale of an event or the potential impact of an event is also important when determining whether it is newsworthy.
The first step in writing a news article is to decide what kind of information to include and how much detail to give. Typically, the headline will set the mood for the article and seize attention. This is followed by a brief introduction that includes the background and context of the story. The body of the article should cover the major points in the news item and include quotes from key players as appropriate. Lastly, the conclusion should tie up any loose ends and make clear what action is being taken or planned.
Once you have a list of facts and have a grasp of what kind of news item you are writing, you can start to organize the details into an outline based on their order of importance. The upside down pyramid structure is one way to organize a news article, but any outline system will work as long as you follow the same basic format of including the most important facts in the beginning and then expanding upon them.
It is also necessary to consider who the audience for your news article will be. If you are writing for a national newspaper, then you will want to focus on events that will affect most of the population. This is different from a local newspaper, which will focus on events that are of particular interest to the community.
Some events are of significant interest to people in specific groups, such as farmers or animal lovers. For example, a scientist might discover an insect that is eating a plant that people eat. This would be of interest to agricultural researchers, but not to most general news readers.
If you are interested in finding out more about a particular subject, setting up Google alerts can be an excellent way to stay up to date with news in the area. You can also read blogs and the opinion sections of newspapers and magazines for more in-depth information on a topic that interests you.