To be successful, a headline must relate to the story, lead the reader into the story, fit the allotted space, and be grammatically correct.
Before you write your headline, have an idea in mind as to how much space you have. For example, if you know that in 20 point Garamond you get an average of 5 characters per inch, it would be simple to write a headline with approximately 20 characters for a four inch space.
Feature Headlines: usually three words or more in length but do not have a subject or verb.
Example: Dollars for Scholars (article on scholarships)
Example: Cafeteria Blues (article on rule changes in cafeteria)
Example: Politics on parade (article on parade that featured
Hanging Indention: has at least three lines, second and third line indented.
Example: Teachers Need
Use only well known abbreviations. (YMCA, NBA, NFL)
Don’t begin headline with a number (spell out)
Use information from your lead when writing a headline for a feature story.
Use active voice.
Use full names unless the person is well known.
Journalism: Headline Writing
Directions: Find and cut out an example of each of the following headlines. You may have to cut out part of the story to show emphasis on that particular headline. For example, in order to notice the centered headline, you must cut out the beginning of the story to show how it lines up.
After each headline is cut out, paste them to a piece of poster board labeling each headline.