Show, don’t just tell, in the lead
I was training a group of magazine writers recently, when one brave soul, Marty, shared his lead:
“Hmmm …,” I said, “Exotic places, huh? Where are some of most the exotic places where you’ve built models?”
“On a battleship during a storm,” he answered. “In a tent in Saudi Arabia. Under my blanket as a kid when I was supposed to be doing my homework.”
“Marty,” I said, “that’s your lead.”
Perhaps nothing is harder about writing a feature-style story than showing in the lead and telling in the nut graph. Illustrate, then explain. Most writers do the reverse …
Draw readers in by putting your best stuff up top
With so many lead approaches to choose from — I can think of 14 off the top of my head — why do corporate communicators so often write leads that are almost guaranteed to make readers’ eyes glaze over?
At Catch Your Readers — a two-day writing Master Class on April 20-21 in Atlanta — you’ll learn a three-step process for determining whether your lead will draw readers in or convince them not to waste their time.
You’ll discover seven types of leads that grab reader attention — and seven that just make them reach for the remote. You’ll find out how to avoid leading with the blah-blah, what kind of lead leads readers astray and which lead should have been tossed out with the telegraph.
Our early bird tickets for this workshop sold out almost immediately. But you can still nab a seat — and save up to $100 each if you bring a friend or two.
Don’t miss out. Register now.
Polish your skills at our 2016 Master Classes
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