how to write articles
• Cambridge, England
First, decide what your article is about and what audience you are targetting. The nature of your audience is very important because it determines what style of language you will use, how long the article should be and what points you need to cover to answer the questions or solve the problems which that audience may have. Next, PLAN your article. The classic format is to "Say what you are going to say, say it, and then say what you have said." In other words, the first paragraph should tell the reader what the article is about, the middle paragraphs should present the necessary information in an orderly and logical fashion and the final paragraph should sum up the topic, present any 'pros' and 'cons' and, possibly, give pointers for further information. Before you begin writing, you should RESEARCH your article. Research should usually take FAR more time than the actual writing! Check and double check your facts and note down any references (if you use quotations in your article, you should always credit the source); a select list of references at the end of the article may be valuable to the reader who wants to know more about the subject. When you come to write your article, your grammar, spelling and punctuation MUST be correct, the style clear, concise and readable (it will help greatly in deciding whether the sense of a passage is clear if you read your article out loud), and the information divided into logical paragraphs. If you have been told to write a specific length, make sure that your word count is within the limits.