Reflective Journal: News Writing Essay

Question:

Discuss about the case study Reflective Journal for News Writing.

Answer:

Introduction:

The past semester on journalism and newswriting has been an enriching learning experience for me. I have learned about various concepts related to newswriting, out of which the inverted pyramid style of story structuring and interviewing were most relevant. I have also gained a lot of insight about my writing style and developed skills to improve my quality of writing.

Essential Concepts Learned. The inverted pyramid style of news writing is a fundamental concept since it structures the most essential information first, followed by additional details in decreasing order of importance (Scanlan, 2003), and based on the 5W and 1H style of structuring (Rogers, 2016). This helps to swiftly direct the reader’s attention to the most important facts of the news in a sequence which arouses interest (Brech, 2013). I will be able to use an inverted pyramid style of writing for structuring my articles and reports (Greer, 1999) during my internship and also apply it to my day to day business communications like emails, memos, letters and agendas (Vitez, No Date) in my future workplace to make them effective and concise.

Interviewing is the best tool to find out truths and relevant facts in journalism and news writing (Harcup, 2015). It helps to gather and record specific information and from a source through face-to-face, telephone or digital conversation (Daly & Kille, 2016). Having a clear understanding of the interviewing process will help me to feel confident whenever I have to appear for a job interview myself, be it for the internship or for my subsequent career life. I will also be able to ask relevant questions pertaining to the job during the hiring process in an appropriate and respectable way.

Key Challenges Faced. The biggest challenge I faced in learning these concepts was during my initial attempts at applying the concepts in my own news writing. I had difficulty in distinguishing the most newsworthy information from the less important facts. In addition to this, I had problems in understanding what questions should be asked in an interview, in what order and how to frame the questions in an appropriate tone. I was also unable to follow some of the terms and expressions used in the study material. I overcame these issues by extensively reading a lot of news reports, press releases and interviews that helped me to identify the desired flow of information. I kept referring to the dictionary to find out meanings of difficult words and regularly practising to write sample articles and interview questions in my own words, which helped to clear my concepts.

Improvement in Writing Style. When I started off with this course at the beginning of the semester, my level of writing was average, but as the time progressed, I learned new skills which helped me to become a better writer. I have observed that my writing abilities have improved drastically, my vocabulary has increased (The Huffington Post, 2014), and I am now able to write in a more organised way. I have learned how to write with a more formal tone and how to give credit to the sources of information I refer to during any research. My writing now has clarity, is comprehensive and does not contain spelling errors or grammatical mistakes. My current writing capabilities have increased my confidence and made me feel more satisfied with my work.

References

Brech, J., 2013. Inverted Pyramid Style. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 20 July 2016].

Daly, C. B. & Kille, L. W., 2016. Interviewing a source: Rules of the road; talking with officials and experts. [Online] Available at:
[Accessed 20 July 2016].

Greer, G., 1999. A New Introduction to Journalism. 9th ed. South Africa: Juta and Company Ltd.

Harcup, T., 2015. Journalism: Principles and Practice. 3rd ed. London: Sage.

Rogers, T., 2016. Definition of Inverted Pyramid - What is the Inverted Pyramid Format?. [Online] Available at:
[Accessed 20 July 2016].

Scanlan, C., 2003. Writing from the Top Down: Pros and Cons of the Inverted Pyramid. [Online] Available at:
[Accessed 20 Juy 2016].

The Huffington Post, 2014. 20 Reasons Why You Should Major in Journalism. [Online] Available at:
[Accessed 20 July 2016].

Vitez, O., No Date. Types of Business Communications. [Online] Available at:
[Accessed 20 July 2016].

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