“Show not tell”

This week I got a chance to write a story about the Hickman High School marching band, which was also the first chance I got to write a “real feature story.” To be honest, it is much harder than every story I have ever written. Although I am not good at writing a feature story, I am lucky that my editor is very patient that she told me a lot about the tips of writing a feature story, including the essential tip—“show not tell.”

“Show not tell” is very abstract as it is hard to understand how to show and what is “tell.” For example, if you are writing a story about science, data is a way to show the importance of this science issue. As to other stories, like my story, “show” means that you should provide as many details as you have and describe scenes.

Another challenge to write a feature story is the words. It is challenging to write the headlines and ledes creatively if you don’t have so many pieces of training. I hope that in the following weeks I can get more chances to write feature stories so that I can practice a lot and become a good feature story writer!

Published by larissagao

Senior student majoring in Convergence journalism-multimedia producing at University of Missouri-Columbia; Former General Assignment reporter at Columbia Missourian

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