How to Write a Feature Article: A Step-by-Step Guide

Table of contents:

If you have a story to tell, or an idea that you think the world needs to hear, then writing a feature article is a great way to get your message across. Despite the fact that the world of journalism has changed dramatically over the years, feature articles continue to be popular among readers. Those who write feature articles have the opportunity to showcase their writing skills, to engage their audience, and to make a difference in the world.

Understanding Feature Articles

What is a Feature Article?

At its core, a feature article is a type of news article that focuses on a particular subject in a more in-depth way than a standard news story. Feature articles are usually longer, more detailed, and more personal than regular news articles.

Types of Feature Articles

There are many different types of feature articles that you can write, such as:

  • Profiles of interesting people
  • Travel articles
  • Investigative pieces
  • Cultural explorations

Each type of article requires a different approach, as well as a different set of skills. Some feature articles require a lot of research while others require more creativity. Regardless of the type of article you choose to write, you need to be passionate about the subject and committed to telling the story in the most engaging way possible.

The Importance of Feature Articles in Journalism

Feature articles play an important role in journalism. They provide readers with a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the world around them. They also serve as a platform for writers to express their opinions and to highlight issues that may not receive attention in the mainstream media.

Choosing Your Topic and Angle

Brainstorming Ideas

The first step in writing a feature article is to come up with an idea. Think about what interests you and what you are passionate about. It is always helpful to brainstorm a list of potential topics that you can explore further. This can be done by reading the news, talking to friends and colleagues, or simply going for a walk and observing the world around you.

Researching Your Subject

Once you have a general idea of what you want to write about, you need to start researching the subject in more depth. This can involve reading books and articles, watching documentaries, or conducting interviews with experts in the field. The more information you have, the better equipped you will be to write a compelling feature article.

Finding a Unique Angle

With so much information available, it can be challenging to find a unique angle for your article. One approach is to focus on a specific aspect of the subject that hasn't been explored in-depth before. This could be a personal story, a quirky detail, or an overlooked fact that sheds new light on the topic.

Conducting Interviews and Gathering Information

Identifying Key Sources

When conducting interviews and gathering information, it is important to identify key sources who can provide you with insight and expertise on the subject. This may involve contacting experts in the field, talking to people who have first-hand experience with the topic, or using social media to connect with people who are passionate about the subject.

Preparing for Interviews

Before conducting interviews, you need to prepare yourself by doing your research and developing a list of questions that will help you to dig deeper into the subject. It is also important to establish a rapport with your interviewees, to put them at ease, and to show genuine interest in their experiences.

Conducting Effective Interviews

During the interview, it is essential to actively listen to your interviewee and to ask follow-up questions that encourage them to elaborate on their answers. It is also important to be respectful and to avoid making assumptions or asking leading questions.

Organizing Your Research

As you conduct research and gather information, it is important to stay organized. This can involve creating a spreadsheet, using note-taking apps, or simply keeping a physical folder with all of your research material in one place. This makes it easier to refer back to your sources and to stay on track as you write your article.

Writing the Feature Article

Crafting a Compelling Introduction

The introduction of your feature article is the most important part of your piece. It should grab the reader's attention, set the tone for the article, and provide a brief overview of what the reader can expect. This can be achieved by using descriptive language, telling a story, or posing a thought-provoking question.

Developing the Body of the Article

The body of your feature article should be organized into sections that flow logically from one to the next. Each section should be focused on a particular aspect of the topic and should include quotes, anecdotes, and examples that support your argument. Use descriptive language to create vivid scenes that bring the subject to life for your readers.

Writing Descriptive and Engaging Scenes

Scenes are an essential component of feature articles. Scenes help to break up the text, provide visual interest, and create a more immersive reading experience for your audience. A scene can be anything from a dialogue between characters to a vivid description of a particular location.

Incorporating Quotes and Anecdotes

Quotes and anecdotes are effective tools for bringing your feature article to life. They allow you to give voice to your sources and to convey their perspectives, opinions, and experiences. Be careful not to overuse quotes or anecdotes, however, as this can detract from your writing and make it seem less authentic.

Concluding Your Feature Article

The conclusion of your feature article should provide closure for the reader and bring the article to a satisfying end. This can be achieved by summarizing the main points of the article, offering a call to action, or highlighting the significance of the subject for the reader.

Final Thoughts

Writing a feature article can be a challenging yet rewarding experience. It requires dedication, research, and a willingness to step outside your comfort zone. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can develop the skills and techniques needed to write engaging and thought-provoking feature articles that will capture the attention of your audience and make a difference in the world.

ChatGPT Prompt for Writing a Feature Article

Use the following prompt in an AI chatbot.

Below each prompt, be sure to provide additional details about your situation. These could be scratch notes, what you'd like to say or anything else that guides the AI model to write a certain way.

You Might Also Like...

Learn how to write a compelling journalism article with our step-by-step guide. Includes ChatGPT prompt.
Learn how to create a comprehensive knowledge base article with our step-by-step guide. Includes ChatGPT prompt.