Lorraine Forrest-Turner

7 great ways to start an article

26 Aug / by: Lorraine Forrest-Turner

We’ve all been there. We need to write that important 500 word article before the end of the day. We have reams of notes, pages of technical info and stacks of truly amazing benefits. If only we could get the blasted thing started!

For most writers, getting beyond the blank screen (or constantly deleting the clichéd, boring or irrelevant openings) is the hardest part of writing an article. Once they’re up and running, all those product features, mind-blowing stats and glowing testimonials seem to just fall into place.

So here are seven ways to start an article. They give you a lead in, a hook, an idea that you can hang everything else from. Every opening won’t suit every subject, but there should be something here to inspire even the worst case of writer’s block.

Oh, and in case anyone is considering law suits, the following ‘facts’ are for illustrative purposes only.

Topical

In a week in which Luis Suarez has been fined £66,000 and banned from football-related activities for four months, a new government white paper looks at the correlation between punishment and behaviour.

Historical/anniversary

In 1954, BMW launched the ‘Dynamic’, its first electric car. Exactly 60 years later, the stunning new BMW i8 shows just how far electric engineering has come.

Anecdotal 

Although I broke two ribs and busted my ankle, whenever I tell anyone I was thrown out of, and then run over by, a golf buggy, I am greeted with peals of laughter. Corporate hospitality events really shouldn’t be left up to amateurs.

Survey/statistics
Men are four times more likely to lie than women, and the average person tells at least three lies a day, according to research by Royal Holloway. Is this a worrying thought for those charged with recruiting new employees?

Unconventional/surprise

His CV is full of typos, he hasn’t held down a decent job in years and he refuses to start work before 10.00am. Meet the new chairman of XYZ plc.

Hypothetical

If you could run a fleet of trucks on used chip fat, an air conditioning system on recycled polystyrene cups and a pizza oven on old beer bottle tops, would you be prepared to hike your prices up by over 100% to meet the costs? While businesses talk of green energy, few companies are prepared to switch if it means losing sales.

Shared problem

We’ve all been there. We need to write that important 500 word article before the end of the day. We have reams of notes, pages of technical info and stacks of truly amazing benefits. If only we could get the blasted thing started!

See what I did there?

 

Photo by Kenan Kitchen on Unsplash

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Lorraine is a trainer for the PRCA
Lorraine is a trainer for the PRCA
Lorraine is a member of the Professional Copywriters' Network
Lorraine is a trainer for Big Fish Training