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Learn How to Write an Editorial on Any Topic
Table of Contents
- What is an Editorial?
- How to Write an Editorial Article?
- How to Write an Editorial for a Journal?
- How to Write an Editorial Letter?
- How to Write an Editorial for a Magazine?
- How to Write an Editorial for a Newspaper?
- How to Write an Editorial Review?
- Is an Editorial an Opinion Piece?
- What is the Difference between an Editorial and an Article?
- Editorial Ideas
Want to express your opinion on something?
You are wondering how to convince the world to think as you do? Then you must learn how to write an editorial and convince your readers to agree with you. These editorials are a part of both government and school newspapers.
An editorial expresses your opinion about any current topic with the aim to persuade the reader to see things from your perspective.
In this blog, we have presented a step by step formula for writing an editorial worthy of the reader’s appreciation.
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What is an Editorial?
An editorial is a newspaper article that contains and explains the author’s ideas. This piece of writing can be on any topic, but usually, it covers social issues. You have to provide enough evidence from credible sources, just like you do in your research papers.
A well-written editorial must contain the problems’ description and their possible solutions to the problem. When writing about a specific issue, don’t forget to give recommendations.
You should create a message for the people who are suffering from that issue and what it takes to improve the situation. Besides, in your writing, you get a chance to speak to the government and request them to take measures to solve the problem.
Generally, there are four types of editorials:
- Interpret and explain
Each type is written for a different purpose and, before writing any of it, you must know the difference between them.
Types of Editorial
How to Write an Editorial Article?
An editorial is an article that presents an opinion of a group, like a writer. Editorial writing is quite similar to research paper writing. Editorials are fun and exciting to write once you get all the required research material and understand the essential steps to succeed in this type of writing.
The following steps will help you make up your mind about writing an editorial piece that can persuade readers to agree with your opinion.
1. Choose a Topic
Editorials aim to promote critical thinking and sometimes to cause people to change their minds on a topic by influencing their opinion. Make sure to choose an interesting topic, controversial subject, or something that has a purpose.
Controversial topics are a great way to stir debate and get the readers engaged right from the start. With opinion pieces, you have to focus on recent stories that people are talking about.
2. Research Thoroughly
Take time and research all aspects of your topic and find all the reasons behind the issue. Look for relevant evidence and examples to support your opinion. Gather all the latest facts and information from credible sources.
3. Pick a Side
Make sure to pick a side and create a valid opinion to know what you are talking about. For a valid opinion, you must come up with logical reasoning. Pay careful attention to this step and provide clear reasons to show why your side is the right one.
4. Writing Editorial
After coming up with a valid opinion and supportive arguments, it is time to start the actual writing process. Make sure this writing is short and clear so that the readers do not get bored and easily understand your point of view.
Start your editorial with a thesis-like statement to catch the reader’s attention right from the start. You can also start your editorial with a question, quote, or summary of what the editorial is all about.
The body of your work should objectively explain the issue and why the situation is important to handle. Try to cover all the bases and include facts and quotations from credible sources.
Conclude your editorial with a noteworthy statement. In this section, you can again include quotations or a question to make the ending worth remembering.
5. Edit and Proofread
It is important to go through your writing multiple times and make sure it's free from grammar, punctuation, and spelling mistakes. If you are unable to do this on your own then ask someone else for feedback so that no errors slip by.
How to Write an Editorial for a Journal?
Though an editorial has the same parts and sections, some editorials are different and have different conventions for their different types. In addition, journals have different rules and criteria that the article and editorial writers have to follow.
For a journal editorial, follow the below guidelines:
- Choose a Thought-Provoking Topic
- Add the Introduction and Thesis of the Chosen Issue
- Explain the Background of the Problem
- How did it occur?
- What are its consequences and effects?
- What is its impact on the larger public?
- Present the Main Argument with Evidence
- Write the Conclusion of your Editorial
Since an editorial is a thoughtful piece of writing, you must choose a significant topic and strike a thought in the readers. The topic should be as per the nature and topic of the journal as if it is a medical journal; you must choose a topic belonging to the medical field.
Introduce the issue or topic of your editorial and add a thesis statement about the issue and the topic you will discuss in the editorial. An editorial uncovers and presents an issue, its significance, effects, and ways to tackle and control it.
Every problem has a background, and the problem you are writing about also has one. In this section of the editorial, mention and explain the background of the said issue.
Also, answer the following questions:
These are some of the questions that you will need to address and answer in this section
What are the main points that you want to talk about? Present the main points in this section and add relevant evidence also. Relevant evidence will add weightage and credibility to your editorial. Look for previous newspapers and online results to collect the proof and discuss the points you have added to the editorial.
The conclusion is the last section of the editorial, and this is you will conclude your editorial. Finally, wind it up by adding a call to action and personal viewpoint by proposing ways to manage the discussed issue.
How to Write an Editorial Letter?
An editorial letter is a letter to the editor of the newspaper, magazine, or any other daily publication. These letters are an important part of a publication as they represent the voice of the general public.
Usually, these letters are either added on the first page of the newspaper or the last page. Sometimes, the newspaper has a separate editorial section for the letters.
These letters are focused on the issues of daily life and aim to attract the public’s attention. These letters also provide solutions to these issues.
To write an editorial letter, follow the below steps:
1. Start the Letter with a Salutation
For this, you do not need to know the name of the editor. You can simply add ‘ Letter to the Editor’ as a salutation. However, if you know the name of the editor, then use the name.
2. Start with an Engaging Sentence
The opening is important to grab the attention of the readers. Instead of beating around the bush, get to the point. Tell the reader about the subject of your letter and make it convincing for them.
3. Introduce the Topic of the Letter
Don't keep the readers and the editor waiting and get to the point real fast and quick. Throughout the letter, be concise, focused, and quick. Talk about the issue and key points that you want to discuss in your letter.
4. Explain the Importance of the Issue
You are writing a letter because you feel that the issue is significant. However, this does not mean that your reader also feels the same emotions or has knowledge about it. Explain the issue’s background and its significance briefly.
Why do you feel that the issue needs to be addressed? Why are you writing this letter? Answer the questions in plain and simple language so that your readers can understand them easily.
5. Provide Relevant Evidence
Provide proof and evidence about the issue that you are discussing. Some of the key evidence could be found in the cuttings of the newspapers and magazines. Use them to highlight the issue and the need for its solution.
6. Add your Opinion about the Issues
What are your personal thoughts about the issue in question? What do you think should be done to handle the situation? Answer these questions by expressing your views. Then, give suggestions to solve the issue and keep everything brief and simple.
7. Keep the Letter Brief and Concise
Shorter and more focused letters are more likely to be accepted for publication. Once you are done with the letter’s writing, read it and see if anything could be deducted.
In case you feel that the issue will not be covered in an editorial letter, ask the editor to allow you to write a guest column or a feature.
8. Add your Signature
Newspapers and other publications do not like and publish anonymous letters. After you are done with the writing part, add your full name, contact number, email address, and home address with it. Newspapers may call you to inquire and know that you have written the letter.
9. Revise your Letter
Make sure that you revise and edit your paper properly before posting it. Check it for clarity as the newspapers prefer well-written, well-researched and brief letters.
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How to Write an Editorial for a Magazine?
Whether you are writing an editorial for regular publishing, your middle school, high school, make sure that you check with its editorial guidelines. Every magazine may have different guidelines, but generally, an editorial in a school and college magazine is written to inform the readers about the magazine's content and how they reflect the culture and standards of the school or college.
It has three parts, like an essay, that includes an introduction, main body paragraphs, and conclusion. Some general guidelines for a magazine editorial are given below:
- It should not be more than 250 words long
- Pick a side and talk about it only. Do not try to cover everything
- Do not use the first person, ‘I’; instead, state the sentence as a fact
- Do not exaggerate and write everything as it is
- Use active voice and avoid passive voice as much as possible
- Avoid using run-on sentences
- Create a rhythm by adding short and long sentences, and simple and complex words
- Try to add a tinge of entertainment into your writing
The introduction section will include the details about the main topic of the magazine and how it has contributed to the general public interest. In the main paragraphs, the writer will explain the articles and photos used in the magazine and how they relate to the main theme of the magazine.
How to Write an Editorial for a Newspaper?
A newspaper editorial is of a much more serious nature than the ones published in school or entertainment magazines. The magazine editorials are written to express the writer’s opinion about a serious social issue. This is why, when writing one, you will need to be really careful and mindful.
When writing the newspaper editorial, follow the below steps:
1. Find a Thought-Provoking Topic
Finding a good editorial topic is as important as writing the entire editorial. When choosing a topic, make sure that it is related to some current issues or events and resonates with the nature of the newspaper.
2. Build your Personal Opinion
Choose a stance for writing the editorial. As a writer, you could either be for or against the discussed matter, but you cannot be on both sides. The editorial aims to present your personal viewpoint and opinion. Make sure that you have used engaging language and strong evidence to persuade your readers.
3. Make an Outline of the Editorial
An outline is important for any writing project. Therefore, you must make a detailed and easy-to-follow outline for your editorial. Make the points of the information and facts that you will add to the editorial. This will also help you focus and present your opinions in a better manner.
4. Compose the Editorial
Once you are done with making the outline for your editorial, it is time to get to the actual writing part. When writing the editorial, follow the outline carefully and closely. Start the editorial with an engaging sentence and catch the attention of the readers.
A newspaper editorial must have at least three arguments. Divide it into sections and discuss each argument one by one. To make the editorial strong and influential, add real-time statistics and facts to support your arguments. Save the strongest for the last and keep your audience engaged throughout the editorial.
How to Write an Editorial Review?
An editorial review is different from writing an editorial. Reviewing an editorial is the next step in the editorial publishing process. Like editorial writing, editorial review writing has a process that the reviewer must follow when reviewing an editorial.
Though, as a writer, editorial reviewing is not the work of the writer but sometimes the teacher may ask the students to review the editorial. In case you get any such assignment, follow the below steps:
1. Read the Entire Manuscript Properly
Before starting with the editorial reviewing and proofreading the content manuscript, read the document completely. Give suggestions, changes, and rearrange the content afterward. Try to understand the purpose of the writer, audience, organization of the content, and thought.
2. Make Notes While Reading the Manuscript
When reading the manuscript, make notes by marking the sections and paragraphs in the manuscript. You can mark them as vague, irrelevant, grammatically incorrect, or inconsistent.
This way, you will know where you will need to make the changes. It also helps you in keeping track of the changes that you need to make in the document.
3. Add the Respective Issues
Once you are done with the marking, reread the content and the paragraphs you have marked and mention their issues. These issues could be anything like weakness of narrative, the irrelevance of the content, shortage of proof and evidence, or grammatical or stylistic errors.
4. Make Recommendation about the Issues
Once you have detected the issues, make recommendations about why the paragraph is not as good as the other parts of the manuscript. Add the suggestions in a separate file or directly on the document and in the column beside the paragraphs.
Suggest the style of writing, the relevancy of the evidence, or any grammatical issues. Other suggestions may include:
- Clarity of the content
- Suitability of the content for the intended audience
- Structure of the manuscript
- Grammatical structure
- The flow of the content
5. Check for Punctuation and other Writing Mechanics
Check the entire document for punctuation and writing mechanics. Here, you can suggest the sections and numbering of the paragraphs. You can also suggest a way of writing that will be more appropriate for the audience.
Is an Editorial an Opinion Piece?
An editorial and an opinionated article may seem the same, but they are somewhat different from each other. An editorial is usually written by the newspaper's editor in charge and may not have the writer's name.
An opinion piece does not have to be published in a newspaper. It could be anywhere, even online, but if you have written the piece for the newspaper publication, it will be identified as an Opinion Editorial or an Opposite Editorial (Op-Ed).
What is the Difference between an Editorial and an Article?
Both an editorial and an article are the parts of a newspaper. While many people believe that both are the same, there are some key differences between them. As said before, an editorial is written by the editor in charge of the newspaper and expresses the views of the editor or the editorial board.
It is an opinionated piece of writing, and it is written to influence the thought process and viewpoint of the readers.
All the other news added in a newspaper are called articles. These could be news articles, sports news, and other news that is added in the newspaper. Usually, it is fact-based, as the writer will have a narrow chance of adding their opinion.
If you are unable to come up with good ideas for your editorial, here are some of the most current topics that you can have a look at.
- Global warming effects on earth
- Should gay marriages be allowed?
- Should marijuana be legalized?
- Is euthanasia immoral?
- Do people complain too much?
- Is there such a thing as a Facebook addict?
- The dangers of social media addiction
- Benefits of Organic Food Consumption
- Benefits of Reading
- Should cigarettes be banned?
Editorial writing is a type that can be hard to explain, and usually, it is a combination of facts and opinions. Have a look at this example to learn the whole writing process better.
Writing an editorial could be a difficult and a huge step in your career, especially when aspiring to become a writer or a journalist. However, you can follow the steps mentioned above for writing an interesting editorial.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What makes a good editorial?
A good editorial should express an opinion without being too biased. It teaches without getting moralistic or preachy, but it also motivates you to take action as well.
What are the three elements of editorial?
The three elements of the editorial are:
Make it easy on yourself. Make it hard on us.
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Literature, MarketingDr. Barbara is a highly experienced writer and author who holds a Ph.D. degree in public health from an Ivy League school. She has worked in the medical field for many years, conducting extensive research on various health topics. Her writing has been featured in several top-tier publications.