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Happy St. Patrick’s Day

Whenever I pitch a story, I try to make sure that the story I am telling is informative and interesting.  I don’t want the pitch to be self-promotional.

Here are today’s tips to think about when pitching a story:

1. Has the contact covered a story like this in the past?  If you are pitching the 5 p.m anchor about a clothing line, it is not relevant.

2. Speaking of being relevant..Make sure the story is very relevant to the media outlet.  Don’t pitch a story about puppies to a cat magazine!

3. Spell check.  Make sure your grammar is on point.  A journalist can delete a pitch based on a misspelling.

4. FWD: I have seen this many times.  A person puts FWD: in the subject line.  I can be intentional or unintentional, however it never works.

5. Establish a relationship first.  I have received many emails from individuals I have no relationship with. If a story is good, it may work but try to establish a relationships before you pitch.

Speaking of St. Patrick’s Day, here is my favorite St. Patrick’s story that deserves more attention.


Writing to Tell a Story

October 8th, 2013 | Posted by Sara in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

In my line of work, I see a lot of manuscripts come and go.   While I applaude writers for putting pen to paper,  not everyone should be an author.   Let me repeat, authors are a unique breed of workers who take pain-staking care with every word and phrase. Not everyone should be a writer.
Writers tell stories and are trying to entertain and educate the reader.
In this blog, I would like to give readers my thoughts for creating wonderful words.  A small disclaimer, I am not saying I’m the best writer in the world but these are my thoughts.
1.  Do not assume you know how to tell a story.   Take a writing class and develop your voice.
a. Many times writers will write as they speak.   This means run-on sentences and bad grammar.  Try to be consise.
2. Please buy a grammar and style book.  Strunk and White, AP style, Chicago Style Manual.  The rules do apply to you as well.
3. Learn how to synthesize your thoughts.  Do outlines before you start to write and organize your thoughts.  When a writer rambles on and on they will lose their reader.
4. Always write for story.  This was the number one rule in journalism school.  We are constantly telling a story.
5. Show me, don’t tell me.  We are not writing a police blotter.  We are writing for a diverse audience. Describe what you see for the audience.
6. Always remember your audience.  Do not assume I know all about religion, the military, the media, and medieval times.  Educate me!
7. Have beta readers!  Before you show the work or submit to any publisher, find a reader who will tell you the truth!
Those are my tips!
Have a great day!