Feature articles differ from ordinary news articles in that they are more in depth and much longer. They are generally on a topical current issue and adopt an explanatory approach. Written in a casual conversational and inclusive style, feature articles attempt to be more personal with plenty of human interest through interviews, quotes, names and anecdotes. They often try to show both sides of an issue. The approach is broad and general.
Feature articles are explanatory in approach and try to reflect a range of divergent views from disparate perspectives. They may not be chronological or sequential in structure, preferring a more relaxed conversational approach of introducing a topic and rambling through in non linear manner. The writer appears more detached with little personal opinion or exposition.
Feature articles attempt to be topical and use lots names familiar to a wide audience with their comments, opinions and actual quotes. By providing both sides of an issue, they tend to give the impression of balance and objectivity as opposed to Opinion columns which may push a single point of view.
What do they look like? Structure
· headline, sub heading
· by-line, journalists name
· full of sweeping generalisations,
· Summarise ideas
· Opinionated but appear impartial
The feature article can take a variety of similar but distinct forms. It does not have to be written in columns although this can be the preferred form in newspapers. The feature article is popular in magazines and may include graphics of some kind to highlight points in the body of the text. With a feature article you need to be particularly aware of audience when composing.
As well as this basic structure you will need to focus on:
Audience- will depend on the style of the magazine and the topic/content. Here think of the niche audience of magazines that you read. Compare these to your parent’s magazines, for example Dolly and New idea. The language must be appropriate for the audience of that magazine or paper. Often you will be given your audience in the task outline. You should use technical jargon and slang if appropriate.
**Purpose **— focus on the task and what the question asks you to do. To write for maximum marks ensure that your feature article is sustained and logical in its argument or point of view. Your conclusion should make these ideas coherent and focus the reader on what you have said. Make your purpose clear, it should be both entertaining and informative.
Communication — to achieve this in the most effective way you will need to use a variety of language devices to keep the reader interested as these are usually extended pieces. When you compose your work consider how persuasive your language is. Do you use questions or rhetorical questions? You can and should use some emotive language and vary techniques to engage the audience. Your feature article will then be convincing and you can convey the information you are asked to provide.