Important rules that a journalist must follow to become excellent in news writing are as follows:
1. You should be concise in your news reporting and try to omit the use of unnecessary words. For example, instead of writing “she is a girl who likes to dance” you should write “she likes to dance.”
2. You should also avoid negative sentences. Instead of saying “Ram did not remember to go there” you should write “Ram forgot to go there.”
3. You should avoid the use of passive voice. Instead of writing “Sohan’s brilliant success was pointed out by Mohan.” You should write it “Mohan pointed out Sohan’s brilliant success.”
4. You should not make too much use of there were and it is phrases. Instead of writing “there was no inclination in either party to fight”, you should write “neither party was inclined to fight.”
5. You should be specific in your news reporting. Generalisations generally lead to abstractions and they appear to deviate from the principle of objectivity
6. By quoting specific events you can make your story very interesting.
7. For effective reporting good grammar is very necessary. Mistakes in numbers agreement and pronoun reference can confuse or misinform the readers.
8. Words are the important tools of a journalist. Therefore, you must improve your word power and the correct usage of words.
9. Knowledge of correct spelling is as important for the journalists as correct pronunciation for the newscasters.
10. The successful journalist must be very careful about the right use of words and language.
Of course, the modern journalists want to use the simple language of the people so that the ordinary masses will be tuned in on their stories. No doubt, the hardnosed purist type of journalist still worries for the use of right words at the right time and place.
Sometimes, typographical errors do occur in the newspapers which are speedily product. A casual observer might come to the conclusion that the newspapermen do not bother about the language, but it is not so. In fact, every news medium wants to maintain the factual accuracy and use of good language.
As mentioned above that news writing has to follow objectivity and inverted pyramid structure, therefore it is not possible to use a literary form while reporting news.
Sometimes, the sentences in the news story are much complicated and lengthened, because the opinions quoted had to be attributed to the appropriate persons.
Similarly, the newsman cannot put more personal words, as traditional objectivity requires an impersonal tone. Besides this, the attempt to tell the climax and enough situation identifying details in the lead itself tends to lengthen and complicate sentences.
Every journalist also tries to keep the story short and pack prime material into the top of the story, so that it is safe from last minute cutting.
Sometimes, this also tends to lengthen and complicate the sentences. Inspite of all these difficulties, the wonder is how newspapermen are able to produce as much good prose as they do.