Learn to be a writer.

Therefore, writing is a basic skill needed by all public relations professionals, regardless of the type or size of the organizations in which they work.

This message is reinstated several times throughout the textbook, Principles of Effective Writing (p.135), and is key in the public relations world.

I enjoyed reading through this chapter, and became encouraged by the point that effective writing can be learned.  This is a good statement for all journalism students because it proves that there is no excuse for poor work, and that with a few more tools, anyone can become a writer.

Pyramid power is crucial, and taught me several things.  First, put the most important details first to grab the readers’ attention.

 Second, the lead should contain the who, what, when and where, and should be placed in the lead. 

Third, if shortening is neccessary, cut the story from the bottom of the story to the top. This is possible because the important information is at the beginning of the story.

With this is mind, I feel more prepared to write a story, but also enjoyed learning to share my message using controlled and uncontrolled media.    Before reading this, I thought of it as the difference between a press release and an advertisement. The text book explains the difference more clear on page 137.

Controlled media, including internal publications, direct mail, posters, and advertising, allow the public relations practitioner to dictate what is published and how it is delivered to the primary audience.

Uncontrolled media, for which someone else makes the decisions about content, include newspapers, television, and radios.

Although uncontrolled media might seem negative, considering someone else decides the final content before it is released, it is usually cheaper to produce.  These are just a few of the things I learned while reading through this chapter that will be effective in helping me become a better writer.

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One thought on “Learn to be a writer.”

  1. Having to tweet in 140 characters or less is a great way to help journalism students practice this advice, because it forces students to write only what is important.

    If you put the most important information first in your story, when you cut from the bottom up you will not lose any key information.

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