9 Must-Know Tips When Writing A News Story

A news story is more than just a collection of facts. It’s an interesting tale that readers will want to follow until the very end. A good reporter needs to know how to tell this story in a way that engages readers and keeps them coming back for more. 

People read the news so they can be informed about what’s happening around them, whether it’s in their community or around the world. 

By knowing how to write compelling stories that keep people engaged and informed, you’ll have a valuable skill that will make your writing stand out from other writers’ stories.

How to Write a News Story STUDENTS WATCH ALL! – YouTube
1. Keep the headline clear and concise.
2. Start with the most important information (inverted pyramid).
3. Use the five W’s and H (who, what, when, where, why, and how).
4. Stick to the facts and avoid adding personal opinions.
5. Attribute sources and provide evidence for claims.
6. Use simple and understandable language for broader readership.
7. Edit and proofread thoroughly for accuracy and clarity.
8. Respect deadlines to ensure timely publication.
9. Be objective and impartial in reporting.

1. Accuracy Is Essential

Accuracy is the cornerstone of journalism. It’s important to get it right the first time, but we’re all human, and mistakes can happen. 

Most news organizations have an editor or fact-checker who will check your work before publication to make sure you haven’t made any egregious errors (and if they do catch something, they’ll let you know).

If you feel like your story needs another look before it goes live, there are a few ways to check for accuracy:

  • Read over everything yourself one more time.
  • Check with someone else who knows what they’re talking about.
  • Ask yourself if this sounds like something that would actually happen in real life. If not? Fix it!

When writing a news article, it’s crucial to keep it simple, informative, and engaging to captivate your readers. Learn how to achieve this with our comprehensive guide on How to Write a Simple, Informative, and Engaging News Article.

2. Write For Your Reader

Whether you’re writing for a newspaper, magazine, or website, it’s important to remember that you’re writing for your readers.

You should make sure that your language is in line with what your audience expects and understands. If you write too dense or complicated, people will lose interest and stop reading and then they won’t have the chance to learn about anything else from your work.

Here are some tips:

  • Use conversational tone (don’t be afraid of contractions!)
  • Use active voice when possible (actions are more interesting than states of being)

3. Get Your Facts Straight

The first thing to do when writing a news story is to get the facts straight.

Avoid assumptions. Don’t automatically assume that your reader knows everything about your subject, or that they’re aware of any possible connections between two seemingly unrelated events. 

If you want to be sure you’re getting all the details right, check with more than one source before publishing anything, and double-check those sources’ sources!

Don’t rely on others to verify the facts for you. There are too many journalists out there who don’t have time or energy to fact-check their work; it’s best if you do it yourself!

Don’t overlook small details. Even though some may seem insignificant at first glance, they can still impact what type of story gets written (or not). 

For example: instead of writing “the man had brown hair,” describe his specific shade of brown hair so readers know for certain whether he has dark brown hair or light brown hair.”

Writing a news article may seem daunting, but fear not! Our Unofficial Guide on How to Write a News Article will walk you through the process, making it a breeze to craft compelling stories.

4. It’s All In The Details

Details are the key to a good story. They’re what make it interesting, memorable, credible, and relevant. 

Think of your favorite movie or book; how many times have you heard someone tell you about their experience with the story? Was it something like: “Oh yeah, I remember that scene where…” or “I’m pretty sure he said this.”

Details help readers visualize what’s going on in your story; they give them a sense of proximity to events (or at least an idea of how close they were). This is especially important for breaking news stories because if people can’t fully visualize it then they might not believe it. 

If you’re writing about an accident on a bridge somewhere in North America then mention what part of North America specifically so readers know whether they should be concerned about traveling across bridges anytime soon!

5. Structure Matters

The structure is key to a good news story. Journalists use a variety of structures, but they all have one thing in common: They’re designed to keep readers engaged and moving through the story.

Here are some tips for writing better news stories:

  • Use hooks. Get your reader’s attention right away by starting with a quote or a statistic that challenges their thinking or intrigues them.
  • Keep your reader engaged by varying sentence length, using strong verbs and keeping paragraphs short (around 4-6 sentences).
  • End strong! Use quotes from experts or people involved in the event, then tie it all together with one more fact or statistic before ending with an impactful closing line.

Want to make your content go viral? Discover the secrets from a professional news writer in our article – Make Your Content Go Viral with 5 Tips. Level up your writing skills and boost your online presence.

6. Develop A Writing Style Guide

Before you can write a news story, you need to have a writing style guide. A style guide is an alphabetized list of all the words and phrases that are acceptable for use in the publication. It should include terms that may be unfamiliar to writers, such as “to” or “the.”

It’s important to have a writing style guide because it ensures consistency across all articles within your publication. 

For example, if you write about “the CEO of XYZ Corp.,” then every other article written by one of your writers should also use this term rather than another one like “boss” or “bossman.”

A good way to start developing your own style guide is by making an outline with headings such as: Plural nouns; Singular nouns; Adjectives; Verbs; Adverbs; Pronouns/Nouns! 

This will help keep track of which words need to be added into each category as well as how many times they’ve been used before adding them into each section so they won’t repeat over again later on down the road when creating future stories (and it’ll make sure there aren’t any duplicate entries).

7. Press Releases Are Not News Stories

Press releases are not news stories. They’re marketing materials, put out by the company or person who wants to tell the public about something they’ve done. 

A press release doesn’t have to be written in a way that’s engaging and easy for readers to understand it just has to get its point across quickly.

Press releases are not edited before publication, which means that sometimes you’ll see errors in spelling, grammar and punctuation (even if they’re corrected later). 

There are also no rules about how much detail a press release should include so while some may read like short articles, others will only tell you what happened without any context around it.

8. A Picture Is Worth 1000 Words

You’ve probably heard this saying before: a picture is worth 1,000 words. While it may seem like an overused cliché, it’s true when you consider how well pictures can help explain what would otherwise be just another article about someone’s day-to-day activities.

For example, let’s say I’m writing about my friend and the new home she just bought. 

If I were to write an entire piece describing all of the things that went into purchasing this house from finding an agent to looking at various properties it would probably take me a good two hours or so to finish writing and editing the piece (assuming that it’s not too long). 

However if I were to include photos of my friend touring houses with her husband and searching through MLS listings online.

While they’re sitting around their dining room table eating sandwiches together then chances are most people would get more out of reading those few sentences than they would if they had read them without any visual aids at all!

If you want to write high-quality news articles that capture readers’ attention, check out our insightful tips in 15 Tips for Writing High-Quality News Articles. Enhance your news writing expertise and become a trusted source in journalism.

9. Fascinate Your Readers From The Start

When your story is published, you want your readers to be hooked from the start. Stumped by how to make that happen? Here are some tips:

  • Start with an interesting fact or statistic.
  • Start with a question.
  • Start with a quote from someone who has first-hand knowledge of the issue at hand.
  • Start with a story about how this issue affects someone’s life in an immediate way (i.e., not just talking about it in general terms).
  • Begin by introducing something surprising or unexpected, such as an unusual fact or statistic that will shock readers into paying attention.”

The Better You Know Your Topic And The More Details You Maintain

Keep in mind that the better you know your topic and the more details you maintain, the less likely you are to make errors. Also, remember that readers are likely to be more engaged with a piece of writing if it has a clear structure and style.

You should also keep in mind that readers want to read about things related directly to them; therefore, it is important for writers to come up with an appropriate opening line or paragraph for their articles (or blog posts) so as not to lose interest from their readership base.

In addition, writers should avoid using too much jargon or complicated language when writing news stories because this can often lead us off track from what we were trying to say originally. 

If possible, try explaining certain terms clearly within brackets after first mentioning them so as not confuse your reader base unnecessarily – this will also help keep things concise!

Curious about the types of stories that go viral? Explore our article – What Types of Stories Tend to Be Super Viral? Learn from viral content and gain valuable insights into crafting shareable news stories.


The key to writing a good news story is to keep it simple. The best way to do this is by writing the first draft quickly and not worrying about grammar or spelling mistakes until later. Once your first draft is done, you can go back and edit it before publishing it online or in print!

Further Reading

The 10 Essentials of News Writing: Learn about the key principles and techniques that make news writing effective and compelling.

How to Write for Journalism: A comprehensive guide on writing for journalism, covering various news formats and styles.

How to Write a News Story: Get practical tips and step-by-step instructions on crafting engaging news stories that resonate with readers.


What are the essential elements of news writing?

News writing requires key elements such as accuracy, brevity, clarity, and objectivity to convey information effectively.

How can I improve my news writing skills?

Improving your news writing skills involves practicing regularly, staying updated with current events, and seeking feedback from experienced journalists.

Are there different styles of news writing?

Yes, news writing can vary in styles, including inverted pyramid, feature writing, and investigative reporting, each serving different purposes.

What makes a news story newsworthy?

A news story becomes newsworthy when it is timely, relevant, has an impact on the audience, and covers significant events or issues.

How can I maintain objectivity in news writing?

To maintain objectivity, journalists should present facts without bias, verify information from multiple sources, and avoid personal opinions in their reporting.