by Lesley Bown and Ann Gawthorpe
Once you have done your research you will almost certainly find that you have more material than you need for the article. Make a list of all the different types of information that you have amassed: interviews, facts and figures, background, explanation, technical information, arguments for and against and so on.
Now check your brief and decide which of the items on your list are absolutely essential to the article. Be ruthless about this – however interested you might be in a quirky piece of information, it can’t go in if it isn’t relevant – but it might form the basis for another article aimed at a different magazine.
Once you have made a list of the core elements for the article, double-check against a copy of the magazine it’s intended for. Ask yourself if this is really the kind of information the editor will want from you.
Finally, put your core list into an appropriate order – again, check against both the brief and the magazine itself. This will give you a template for the actual writing, so take the time to get it right.
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