The sad truth is that there is only so much news to go around and every newspaper, magazine and new website wants to write about it. This makes it difficult on content writers to produce 100% unique work that has not be overdone, over used or rehashed time and time again. How then, do you make sure that what is being written is not going to be what someone else has already written about the subject? Any time a writer is writing factual information, and especially the news, you need to step back and consider a few tips that can help with the unique fresh aspect of a story or content.
Check the Facts
Just because the content was published, read or heard about in a popular news source does not mean that it is completely accurate or has all the details. A writer wants to make sure that what they are writing tells about the incident in as much detail as possible without changing any of the facts or elaborating when there is nothing to add.
Stay as Neutral as Possible
Staying as neutral as possible with content can be hard, especially when it is a subject that has personal meaning for the content provider. Remember, a writers job is to tell a story or cover a topic in a factual way. This is true of most content unless the content is an editorial piece were the opinion of the writer is being given. While adding a personal spin may be acceptable, the writer must always remain true to the facts. A bit of detective work can get the writer new and fresh information to use that no one else has reported on yet.
Take a Different Approach
If all the other reports consist of what witnesses are saying, see if you can find out anything from the people who were involved. If the reports are from the people, talk to witnesses to find out if they noticed something those involved did not. Another way to change things up a bit is to find out the history of the news or how it all got started. You want to give the important details and then add in a bit of trivia or something unusual.
Never Write Immediately After Researching
If you have been checking out different websites or going through video tapes, take notes on everything, but do not use the words you hear or see unless you are going to quote someone. Read over all your notes and keep them next to you for fact checking. Write a first draft of the article and reread it, comparing it to your notes to make sure you have everything correct. Finally, with your draft in hand, rewrite the article. This is the piece you will use after going over it for any typing or grammatical errors. Make sure you use active case when telling the story and keep any true opinions out.
Rewriting the news is not hard once you get used to it. To become good at it, so that publications will want to buy your work, never take an existing piece and just change the wording around. The only thing that will get you is a bad reputation as a poor journalist.