This is a new workshop, but in the future, student testimonials will appear in this space.
On Your Byline:
Writing Features for Magazines & Newspapers
Facilitator: Elsie Walker
you wish you knew more about the mechanics of taking an idea, gathering
information and forming it into a magazine or newspaper feature?
In this overview workshop, you’ll learn about it by doing it!
First we’ll talk about what feature articles are and then
we’ll go through the process of researching and writing one.
The idea is to give you a feel for what goes into creating a
feature … think of it as a “jump-start” on working toward a
start by laying some groundwork for our topic. We’ll look at what a
feature article is and isn’t, and how writing for magazines differs
from writing for newspapers. I’ll
share a few of my published feature articles as well as direct you to
websites where you can read some other examples of features. We’ll end
with a reading on idea generation for articles.
Students will come up with an idea or two for a short feature.
For this assignment students will be asked to think of a person,
a hobby, a career, or a local organization that they’d like to write
We’ll discuss getting information for an article. Reading assignments will talk about the different methods of interviewing (in-person, by phone, and e-mail) and the anatomy of a feature. Based on facilitator feedback from the last assignment, you will gather information to write an article on one of your proposed ideas, determine the angle for your story and write your lead.
week we’ll look at the steps in getting words down on paper and what
to do when the words won’t flow (writer’s block). You’ll take your
lead (revising it if necessary based on facilitator feedback ) and then
make an outline of what you want to cover in the rest of article.
on feedback from your last assignment, you’ll write your article and
receive facilitator feedback on it.
Required Materials: None
Objective: After taking this course, students should understand what a feature is (and how it differs from a “news” article), know the basics for interviewing sources and understand the anatomy of a feature. By the end of class, students will have written a short feature article.
About the facilitator: A freelance writer with over 200 published articles, Elsie Walker has written for a variety of publications. Her magazine credits include articles in: Succeed, Hope, Grit, Seek, Women’s Circle, NJ Tech, College Bound, Byline, The Quiet Hour, Fiddler Magazine, My Little Magazine and Women Alive! Also, she has been PC columnist for New Writer's Magazine. (As you can tell, rather than specialize in one market, Elsie writes for a variety of them…educational, religious, journalistic, general interest, juvenile and hobby). In addition, she is a contributing writer for four weekly newspapers in New Jersey’s Recorder Publishing chain. Elsie has a Masters Degree in Humanities and teaches two writing courses, Introduction to Freelance Writing For Magazines and Introduction to Technical Writing, at New Jersey ‘s County College of Morris.
Books recommended on this page are not required reading for participation in the course. Required materials, if any, are listed in the course syllabus.
Successful Writer's Guide to Publishing Magazine Articles
While reading "The Successful Writer's Guide to Magazine Publishing," you'll notice that Dr. Shaw has a gift for making you feel as though she's addressing you and you alone. While she offers common-sense advice, and a can-do methodology, she also doesn't sugar coat the fact that writing is hard work. Written in a reader-friendly style, this little jewel is a must-have for all of you who love to write, but never dreamed you'd have the opportunity to turn writing into a profession.
A practical introduction to what a magazine writer does.
The book explores the best magazines for beginning writers, how to get