Dan O'Day proudly announces...
A Unique Book for Broadcast News Professionals!
by Peter Stewart
(323-page e-book) (PDF format)
A Confession: When Peter Stewart first told me he was working on this book, I didn't understand exactly what the book would be like, how it would work, and how it would benefit journalists around the world.
But I did know one thing: If Peter was excited about it, I was excited about it. I've known Peter a long time. And I've known his international reputation as a broadcast journalist even longer.
He's exceptionally accomplished.
Extremely good at what he does — which is delivering broadcast news.
In fact, let's get his "credits" out of the way now, just in case you've heard his name but aren't sure exactly who he is....
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Peter Stewart has two decades of radio and TV News experience in the United Kingdom — including commercial stations as well as the BBC.
Peter Stewart won a New York Radio Award for his "personality" News presentation.
Peter Stewart trains radio News staffs around the world.
Peter Stewart is coauthor of the standard text, BASIC RADIO JOURNALISM.
Peter Stewart believes News — broadcast, print, or online — is important. Important enough not to be presented in a dull, easy-to-ignore, by-the-numbers "rip 'n' read" style.
Peter Stewart knows what you know: That most news stories are boring. Not necessarily because of the content, but rather because of the way in which they're delivered.
He also knows that the listener, viewer or reader decides whether to pay attention to any particular News story on the basis of just one sentence — the first sentence of the story.
I don't know if he wants me to reveal this about his personality, but Peter Stewart is intensely competitive. He stays up late and rises early to pour every ounce of his skills, wiles, and Professional Bag o' Tricks into making every one of his newscasts stand out from his competitors'.
Even when he sleeps, he dreams of new ways to present what otherwise might be "the same old" News.
It is this competitiveness combined with his genuine desire to make sure the News really does reach his audience that led to the creation of Find-A-Line.
What Is Find-A-Line?
Peter explains, "All news and headlines writers want to 'sell' a story. You need to grab the audience and make them sit up and take notice, think — or laugh. And you can do that with the use of words and the creative use of English — the most descriptive and adaptable language in the world."
Peter spent years gathering the most interesting lines and phrases he could find — from print & broadcast news and advertising, newspaper and magazine articles, and (part of his genius, this:) from everyday speech.
And he's distilled his word sleuthing into one massive, 323-page source book for the professional journalist. Especially for the professional broadcast journalist.
- A Word Bank filled with fresh and original lines for your News copy — approximately 10,000 cool phrases, rhymes, puns, alliterations, handy opposites, linked phrases, and word plays designed to grab your audience's attention from Word One.
- A Cliché Crusher.
- An ingenious, one-of-a-kind compendium.
- The base camp from whence you can kick-start your creativity.
How Does Find-A-Line Work?
How the heck does Find-A-Line work?
Find-A-Line is brilliant in its simplicity.
Find-A-Line uses broadcast-friendly phrases to build headlines, teasers, story starters, and/or pay-offs.
For example, Rhymes: I live near a university (UCLA), and on occasion the fraternity houses engage in very loud celebrations...all night long. If this were reported in a newscast (or even a newspaper article), most likely the story would begin:
"Westwood residents are complaining about noisy UCLA fraternity parties..."
Nothing wrong with that opening, is there?
But spend just a moment with Find-A-Line and you'll be inspired to begin the story this way:
"For a sleep-deprived group of Westwood residents, the UCLA noise annoys.... "
(Yes, "anyone" could have thought to rhyme those two words in that context. But no one did. Unless they had Find-A-Line.)
Find-A-Line covers everything from "Accidents" to "Zoo;" 70 different kinds of animals; 25 categories of body parts; 75 lines for Christmas and nearly 300 describing the weather. (Do you ever mention the weather in your newscast?)
By the way, if you ever report on Traffic: How many ways can you think of to tell your audience that the traffic on a particular particular road is "slow" or "congested"? Peter has come up with nearly 50!
You'll use some of the Lines "off the shelf," as-is.
You'll adapt others to fit the day's stories.
And — in my opinion, this is the very best use of this extraordinary resource — you'll discover that others spark original ideas within your own fertile brain.
Let's be realistic: Your News rarely differs in content from the competition's. It's how you present it that sets you apart.
Your competition's story:
"The surrogate mother — is it right to hire someone to give birth to your baby?"
"Some people have referred to it as 'womb service' — but is it medically or ethically right?"
Your competition's weather forecast:
"It's going to be an icy night."
"Ice overnight might mean a day of slips, trips and broken hips. "
Find-A-Line will put you ahead of the pack by avoiding the dog-tired expressions that other reporters trot out again and again.
Journalism is serious stuff. But that doesn't mean you can't have some fun with it. (The BBC didn't hesitate to tease a story on beach lifeguards with the phrase, "To surf and protect.")
I live in California. A local radio newscast might well lead off a story by saying, "People whose job it is to predict earthquakes...."
But with Find-A-Line, they'd be more apt to refer to "fault finders. "
If a new actor has been cast in the role of James Bond, with Find-A-Line you'll be able to kick off your story with a reference to "the world of thespionage."
"What?? Why can't I just say, 'A new actor has landed the role of James Bond?' "
Well, you can. Go ahead. Just like the other 10,000 newscasters will that morning.
Got a story about online dating that ends in marriage? Maybe you'll have the nerve to begin:
"The worldwide wed? More and more singles are meeting their mates on the Internet...."
THIS BOOK IS NOT FOR YOU IF....
...all you do is read the News. Rip it off the wire (or copy, paste & print it off the 'Net), open the microphone, and read someone else's dry, lifeless, utterly ignorable News copy.
No insult intended there. You and I both know that's how most people deliver the News.
Those are "news announcers," nothing more. No shame in that. Nothing to be proud of, either. All it takes is the ability to read aloud.
The fact that most people are content to deliver News that no one really listens to means bad news for me, good news for you (if you are among the minority who want their newscasts to stand out, to be heard, to actually make an impact on the audience):
Bad News For Me: This will not become the best selling book I've ever published. The vast majority of "news announcers" are perfectly content to deliver newscasts that no one listens to. They'd never invest even a dime to improve their work, hone their professional skills, or increase the value of the News to their audience.
Good News For You: If you're a professional....If you take pride in your work....If you're always looking for any extra edge that will help improve your craft and enhance your connection to your audience.... You're among the minority. Find-A-Line will be your secret weapon — one that is unlikely to be shared by your competition.
Oh, one more thing: If you're not good with words — if you don't already have a well-developed vocabulary and a strong intellectual curiosity — Find-A-Line probably is not for you.
THE BEAUTY OF THE E-BOOK FORMAT
Find-A-Line is an e-book, in PDF format.
That means you can, if you wish, print the entire book at once. Or just selected pages as needed.
But you'll get the most from Find-A-Line by keeping it as a digital copy on your computer desktop — ready at all times to help you find a unique, ear-catching way of beginning (or ending) an otherwise run-of-the-mill story.
With the e-book format, your copy of Find-A-Line is immediately searchable. Just enter a key word (any word) or phrase and instantly you'll see all the applicable references.
(Find-A-Line also is arranged alphabetically - like a dictionary. So if you're not sure what your key word should be, you still can "flip through" the pages until inspiration strikes.)
YOU'LL RECEIVE THE UNEXPURGATED VERSION.
Find-A-Line was written by a UK broadcast journalist.
As a result, some words, names and places are specific to the UK.
Originally, Peter wanted to go through the entire book and remove everything that he thought would be "UK-only."
"No way," I said. "I'm not interested in offering people a 'censored' version of this book. Let the reader decide what is appropriate for his or her market or culture."
So your copy of Find-A-Line will include numerous items that cannot be used as-is in, say, America. Or in New Zealand or in Singapore.
But you will be able to "steal the inspiration" of some of those and use them to create your own original phrases.
Also, a few of the names of people are "topical," which means that sooner or later they'll become outdated.
I want you to know about the "UK-centric" and "some topical names" features up-front, so you won't be surprised.
But we're talking about a smattering of such items among the 10,000+ that fill these 323 pages. Instead of chopping the book down to a smaller size and deciding for you which elements don't fit your audience, I'll send you the entire book so that you can be the editor of your own resource book.
FREE: REVISED EDITIONS AS THEY'RE PUBLISHED!
For Peter Stewart, Find-A-Line is a continuing work-in-progress.
He constantly is updating it with new phrases — up to a dozen per day! (Did I mention that he barely sleeps?)
Once you have ordered your copy of Find-A-Line, I will send you every revised edition... at no charge!
"Oh, there must be a ton of 'fine print' to go along with that offer!"
Here's the Fine Print:
- Peter doesn't promise to continue to revise Find-A-Line forever. He does plan to keep adding to it indefinitely, simply because he uses Find-A-Line in his own daily work. So he has a selfish interest in continuing to add to and "upgrade" Find-A-Line. But if and when he stops, there will be no more updates.
- When you order your copy of Find-A-Line, there will be a space to enter your e-mail address. We will e-mail your yearly updates of Find-A-Line for as long as your e-mail address continues to work. (You can always let us know if you have a new e-mail address you'd like us to use.) If we do not have a working e-mail address for you, we will stop attempting to send you the yearly updates.
Download your copy now for just $47
"I always recommend Find-A-Line to radio journalists as a way of getting that extra but all-so-important piece of creative inspiration in their script writing. It's invaluable!"
— Paul Chantler, Radio Programming Consultant
"It's the satellite navigation of the radio journalism world!"
— Howard Hughes, SmoothFM/talkSPORT
"Find-A-Line is better than chocolate when it comes to unblocking writer's block. A quick search of its contents often ends up with a completely new angle. An invaluable resource!"
— Sue Coryndon, BBC Radio News
"Find-A-Line is a godsend for any radio journalist. How many times can you write yet another story about delays on trains or taxes increasing? That is where Find A Line is more like a life-line! Newscasters have to come up with countless teases and constantly 'forward promote.' Find-A-Line comes to the rescue with endless examples of headlines or attention-grabbing phrases. Peter Stewart's compendium is the ideal resource to kick-start your creative thinking and to spice up your news scripts!"
— Alex Bish, Essex FM
Download your copy now for just $47
Find-A-Line is a 323-page e-book (PDF format), available for immediate download.
Your book can be read (and printed) from any computer that has Acrobat Reader (Version 4.0 or higher).
If you don't have Acrobat Reader, you can download it for FREE from:
(323-page e-book) (PDF format)
delivery! When you submit your order, you'll be able to download this valuable