Getting started in journalism is tough.
You don’t know what you need to know.
Find good mentors and listen to them.
I did and they taught by example and advice.
Now I try to do follow their example.
Some rules have changed, thanks to technology.
Here are 10.5 tips we gave our newspaper intern,
They are for posting on our site and social media.
1. Check news sites Monday – Friday, These include:
– Print and online newspapers and news services.
– TV and/or local news radio station sites.
– Your own inbox for news releases
2. Stories we need to post should have:
– Local people or angles involved.
– Be of high interest to our readers.
3. Always attribute where the news came from.
-“according to ___”
– “___ reported.”
4. Write headlines with the names of towns involved:
– “Gaston wife kills unfaithful husband”
– “County team wins Super Bowl”
5. Remember WIIFM (what’s in it for me).
Always think about what readers need or want:
– To know that will affect their lives.
– That involves local people they may know.
6. Keep sentences short – 15 words on average.
7. Use active verbs. Forms of “to be” are static.
8. Use simple 1-, 2- and 3-syllable words.
9. Translate police and governmental jargon.
Use language the rest of us understand.
10. Keep postings to no more than 150-160 words.
Our audience is made up of busy people.
10.5. Ask if we need a longer story for print.
And when in doubt, ask us for help.
For my Little Red Book of Compelling Writing;
– email JerryBellune@gmail.com.
Author Rachel Haynie and I will lead a discussion of six books we believe everyone should read and enjoy. The Adventures in Learning classes will be at the Shepherd’s Center in Lexington.
The books are:
1. Three stories from the New Testament.
– Herod’s wrath, Jesus’s birth and the flight into Egypt.
– Jesus’s ministry and the meaning of the Beatitudes.
– Paul’s Damascus Road experience and ministry.
2. Blue Highways by William Trogden
3. The Member of the Wedding by Carson McCullers
4. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
5. Travels with Charley by John Steinbeck.
6. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
To get the most from this course:
1. Read the book (or at least a few chapters) before each session. Also Google the authors and read a bit about their lives.
2. Be prepared for interactive discussions of their lives and their underlying motivation in writing the books. This will help you gain more insight and increase your understanding of what you read.
3. Consider the lessons you will learn as a more discerning reader and, if a writer, how you can improve your own craft.
The first class is at 10 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 25, at Lexington United Methodist Church on East Main Street in Lexington.
To register for the class and other classes, go to
Do you know how serial entrepreneurs think?
How they work? What makes them successful?
You can find out Friday at the VIP Club Master Mind.
Serial entrepreneur Cynthia Jones will share her secrets
Cynthia started her business career in banking.
She found out that she loved how money works.
She owned mortgage, insurance and real estate businesses.
All of this taught her how to leverage money – and time.
She will share with us Friday her thoughts on:
1. Accounting: What you do with your money is critical.
2. Budgets: Planning and tracking revenues and costs.
3. Credit: How to protect it, use it and grant it.
Having a struggle? Cynthia’s ideas can help you.
Want to reach the next level? This will boost you.
We start at 9:45 a.m. with coffee and conversation.
At 10 we start the storytelling session.
Three of us will share a real life story with all of us.
The best storyteller wins an autographed book.
The book is “Your Life’s Great Purpose.”
Mark Twain said there are two big days in life:
1. The day you were born.
2. The day you find out why.
Bring your best friend or best client.
Stay for lunch as our guest.
The courtesy of an RSVP will be appreciated.
Just email me at JerryBellune@yahoo.com
A friend of ours drives for a cookie bakery.
It’s an evening job delivering fresh, hot cookies.
It’s like pizza delivery but has longer sales hours.
Pizza sales usually last a few hours at meal times.
Cookie hours can last all evening.
Particularly among spoiled college kids.
He tells me he’s made deliveries after midnight.
Wonder how these kids make it to 8 a.m. classes?
Part of the secret is where you make deliveries.
He works a downtown college campus area.
Most call-ins are from girls’ dorms and apartments.
The cookies are baked and delivered fresh.
They cost pennies a piece to make.
They go for dollars. That’s a big markup.
The other costs are expenses and profit margins.
This can mean high profit margins done right.
The owner’s expenses are in:
1. His employees, primarily the bakers.
2. A commission to his drivers.
They make more on tips than he pays them.
3. Baking supplies and equipment.
4. Rent, phone, etc.
5. His own net profit which is sizeable.
How could you make this work for you?
Where do your clients live and/or work?
What is it that they really want from you?
How could you convince them to increase orders?
What would they buy more of more often?
What could you offer exclusive in your market?
How could you boost the value of your offers?
Would a delivery service add extra value?
Would delivery increase your profit margins?
Could you start a continuity program for clients?
We discussed this last month. Did you miss it?
For a copy email firstname.lastname@example.org
©2017 The Bellune Company, Inc