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Basic Building Blocks at Work

Though not the only article to use this format, the "New group to handle high-profile suspects" article on page A4 is one example of an article following the inverted pyramid format. It begins with the lead--"The Obama administration, moving to break with Bush-era interrogation policies, announced it would create an interagency group to manage the questioning and transfers of terrorist detainees." This lead is followed by supporting details to further inform the reader of the situation--such as the information on the new group and its purpose, which is to "correct some of the abuses that took place under the Bush administration's program." Next, there is a quote from Attorney General Eric Holder followed by more facts on the new program.

The lead of the "Expected loss of profits rankles business owners" article on page A1--"Viewed from behind the sandwich counter at Jimmy Sunseri's Strip District shop, the G-20 summit next month looks grim"--follows the first four tips Clark and Scanlan give on page 291 of America's Best Newspaper Writing. This lead is short; it's only 19 words long. The main focus of the article--the G-20 summit--is mentioned. The full point of the article is made clear only two short paragraphs later. Though it does not directly get to the point, the audience already knows part of the point because of the title, the rest of the point is made clear shortly thereafter, and the lead does include "elements that dramatize the news." The words "look grim" add all of the drama needed to grab the reader's attention. Also, whether this lead is the most startling or sensational anecdote or not, it is related to the news.

Other thoughts on Clark and Scanlan's points in relation to the Tuesday August 25, 2009 issue of the Tribune Review

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on August 25, 2009 9:29 PM.

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