Editorial writing is a big step up in any writer’s career because it requires unlimited love for research, detail, and exploring new subjects that are not hackneyed but truly inspiring and thought-provoking.
What is an editorial? This is an article that showcases a periodical’s opinion on a certain issue. A lot of editorials are designed to draw public’s attention to this issue and sometimes even take action. It is meant to make readers think critically and analyze the subject of the discussion.
Features of a Good Editorial
Before we begin to discuss the process of writing, we would like to focus on those qualities that make am article a good, interesting editorial:
- Uses relevant, reliable, and recent sources of reference to provided deepest insights;
- Is based on facts and doesn’t make assumptions;
- Doesn’t contain any typos and is always thoroughly proofread before submission;
- Raises a new, exciting question;
- Is supported by visuals such as tables and figures as well as statistics;
- Is logically structured to guide readers through the article
- Contains excellent hooks to attract readers and enhance their interest
Now, when you have an idea of what good editorial features are, we can move forward and talk more about the writing process.
Select an Appealing Topic
What have all periodicals been talking about lately? Is there anything so urgent that you must cover it in order to engage your constant audience and attract even more readers? Hot, widely discussed issues are what editorial writers want to analyze and express their newspapers’ opinion about.
Make sure to narrow down your line of discussion because it is always easier to talk a lot about many things; however, in case of an editorial, it is not the amount of issued that readers are looking for – it is the depth and uniqueness of your analysis. Try to concentrate on something particular and demonstrate your critical and creative skills.
Choose an Approach
The tone and direction of your analysis will depend a lot on the chosen approach to the issue. Many resources state that there are a number of ways one can treat a topic under analysis:
- Interpreting or explaining an issue is an effective way to engage the audience. There might be matters that can seem complicated to people not specializing in certain fields, which is why they will find your explanation of the subject extremely helpful. It goes without saying that you are supposed to have a deep, good understanding of the problem you are going to cover.
- Criticizing is probably the first method that pops up in mind when we think about an editorial. This is a great opportunity to do extensive research in order to suggest a solution to the problem and help readers familiarize themselves with a perplexing issue.
- Praising a person, an organization, a book, etc. is also a good reason to write an editorial. So many outstanding things take place around the country and the world that some of them definitely deserve a closer attention from a periodical.
- Persuading the audience is the fourth category. Maybe, you have discovered a situation that requires immediate actions and you would like to introduce it to people and let them participate in finding a good solution. An editorial is an amazing way to educate people and motivate them to make a difference.
A crucial rule to remember when creating an editorial is that uncertainty and vague remarks are a good article’s worst enemies. Since you were given a right to be an editorial’s author, you have to speak about the issue with confidence, demonstrating that your position is firm and impregnable. Define your agenda and introduce a thesis at the beginning of the article such that your readers could see immediately what the work is about and what they should expect from it.
Be Ready to Argue
Since you are so confident in your point of view, readers now expect that you will provide lots of irrefutable arguments that will support your opinion, weaken opponents’ position, and, perhaps, change readers’ minds. Please, make sure all these expectation are met and you are 100% ready to defend your thoughts and provide substantial evidence. Keep in mind that the opinion you express is often not only yours; editorial authors represent the entire staff’s position, which is why the points covered in the article must be objective and trustworthy.
Target an Average Reader
By calling our reader average, we by no means want to be offensive; we simply want to repeat the point mentioned above – not every person who reads your editorial specializes in the field. For this reason, it is critical to avoid heavy terminology and jargon that is comprehensible only for a narrow group of specialists. If you are covering a scientific discovery, make sure to explain all difficult concepts by providing metaphors, analogies, or other kinds of explanation. An editorial should be engaging and thought provoking, not a brain-killer that makes readers ask ‘What have I just read?’ questions.
The language of an editorial should be rather informal and entertaining; this is exactly the place to demonstrate how one can utilize one’s language skills and turn the most sophisticated, esoteric subject matter into a candy that everybody can enjoy. One more rule: keep your writing below 1000 words. When it comes to editorials, nobody wants to spend too much time reading these articles. So, try to analyze the topic as deep as possible within a rather short piece using the most persuasive, sharp language.
As was said above, always think of a possible solution to the existing problem; otherwise, what was the reason behind writing this article? What was its real value?
We hope that this overview have you a good idea about what editorial authors should pay attention to and that it will help you create a better piece of writing.