Knowing how to start any piece of writing is always difficult. This is odd because we can all use language fluently and never have to wonder how to start a chat with a friend.

What makes writing so difficult to start is that it is a permanent form – one that allows our reader to dwell upon what we say. It needs to engage the reader and often convince them too.


Stray dog.

Imagine you have been asked to write a news article based on someone who rescued a stray dog. Where would you start?

Your plan might include:

  1. Facts about the rescue. As it is a news article this means your reader will be looking for answers to questions such as 'what', 'who', 'when', 'where', 'why' and 'how' (the so-called journalist’s ‘5W+H’ questions).
  2. Comments from interested and involved individuals.
  3. What happened to the dog and what will happen in the future.
Piece of paper with 'Article plan' written as the title. Underneath, a bulleted list of events relating to the news story have been annotated with either 'Fact', Comment' or 'Future'.This article plan outlines the facts, comments and what will happen in the future