The Long and Short of It by Pamela Mytroen

Here are four mistakes to avoid in journalism and human interest:

I. TOO LONG – the Interview. The editor of The Times sent me off on my very first article. With high heels clicking and briefcase swinging, I knocked on the door of a soon-to-be-100-year-old. I settled myself in her antique rocker and began firing questions. After I’d filled two pages of notes, the centenarian nodded and fell sound asleep. I snuck out of her apartment with a half-written story and vowed to keep my interviews shorter.

The Short of it: Interviews should be 10 minutes for musicians and 20 minutes for everyone else. Do your research ahead of time. You’ll have a satchel full of pertinent questions to ask. The rest you can get from their website, or call them back later. Read More

Opinion Pieces Need Muscled Middles by Pamela Mytroen

Nonfiction has unique challenges with middles. A reader may notice that the body of the piece flops around in too many directions rather than delivering a muscled middle. This divergence should be addressed at the very beginning of every opinion piece by developing a focused thesis. Read More