Presentation Handouts For: Y22WWWV

Thank You

Thank you for attending Ragan's Writer's Workshop: Reporting, Writing and the Craft of Storytelling in partnership with Ragan Consulting Group. Below is the slide deck from the presentation.

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Thursday, August 18, 2022

Writer's Workshop: Reporting, Writing and the Craft of Storytelling slides


How to be a good reporter in your own organization

The foundation for powerful writing is solid reporting, yet your writing falters when you lack facts and insights from your sources. Sometimes, you just need to share a telling example that illustrates a trend or a bit of color that captures the emotion of a situation. In this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to change your approach to news hunting and gathering
  • How to develop and nurture sources inside your organization
  • The two Ps of interviewing: Preparation and Persistence
How to write a good profile

You encounter many interesting people whose stories  should be told. Your co-workers, customers and the public want to hear about them. People inside and outside your organization are curious about your leaders. Yet profile-writing is the most neglected area of corporate communications. In this session, you’ll learn:

  • The guiding rule: Why would someone want to know about this person?
  • The types of questions and when to use them
  • How to structure a profile from beginning to end
  • How to get a good quote from your subject – and others
Use your powers of observation

This session begins with a primer on the elements of a good story: Humans, emotion, movement, voice and color. Then you’ll put those lessons to work with a writing exercise:

  • In a paragraph, describe a process, person, place or thing from work
  • Take us somewhere
Get the big stuff right

Writing your best story won’t matter if you don’t get your audience to click through and get started. There are three ways to make that happen: a compelling, relevant image to make us pause; a captivating headline and teaser to tell us why the story is worth our time; and an energetic lede to pull us into the story and send us on our way. In this session, we’ll show you how to:

  • Write a good headline and teaser that:
    • Attracts the attention of readers with benefit words and clever choices
    • Tells readers enough about the story to compel them to click through and learn more
  • Write a lede that:
    • Tells us the news we need in the first paragraph
    • Draws us in with a colorful, relevant anecdote.
Writing profile headlines and ledes

We’ll wind down our workshop  by going back to your profile subjects you interviewed. You’ll write a headline or lede (or both) for a profile about the person you interviewed. It’s OK if you need to check back with your subject to confirm facts, but be sure to spend your time on writing, not reporting.