CONSIDER THE ALTERNATIVE

COPY TIPS

The primary function of a yearbook is to tell the story of the year through pictures and words. But both of these elements have undergone change in the last few years. We’re seeing more and more pictures on each spread, packaged differently than we have seen before. We’re also seeing words used in ways other than to form standard copy. Take a look at this list of some different ways in which we can present written material, either in place of traditional copy or to supplement it. With a little brainstorming, you could easily come up with additional ways to increase coverage. Just remember: whatever “word presentation” we choose, we must be sure the story gets told accurately and completely.

FAST FACT BOX

This can be filled with key information from the main story or by adding additional information that focuses on the who, what, when, where, why and how

BIO BOX

Brief profiles of people, places or organizations that give the reader key information

LIST

A series of names, tips, components, events—any categories that add context to the main story or topic

GLOSSARY

A list of specialized words with definitions to help clarify topics and add to coverage

CHECKLIST

A list of items or guidelines that highlights key points

QUIZ

A list of questions that lets readers interact with the topic by testing their knowledge and understanding

Q & A

Verbatim dialogue between the reporter and the subject(s) of an interview

PUBLIC-OPINION POLL

A survey that samples opinions on a current or a related topic to the spread coverage

QUOTE COLLECTION

A series of relevant comments on a topic from students, teachers, coaches, etc.

NARRATIVE

A short piece written in first person by someone involved in the topic being covered on the spread

HE SAID/SHE SAID

Viewpoints from both genders on some aspect of the topic being covered

CHARTS

Fever chart (measures changing quantities over time), bar chart (compares items visually by representing them as columns) or pie chart (comparing the parts that make up the whole)

TABLE

Data arranged into columns or rows so readers can make side-by-side comparisons

RATINGS

A list of people, sports teams, movies, etc. with values or arranged in order of
popularity

TIMELINE

A chronological list of events

STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE

A brief how-to that explains a process

DIACHART

A plan or drawing designed to show how something works or to explain key
parts

MAP

Give geographical information by showing the location of events or places relevant to coverage

Contributed by:
Lynn Strause
Herff Jones Special Consultant
Former JEA Yearbook Adviser of the Year