WUNC Writing Intros: The State of Things
An intro is the text the host reads to introduce the subject of the show. Here are some tips on writing intros:
- They don’t give Pulitzers for writing radio intros. If they did they would sound like the Gettysburg Address. Short. Simple. Big thoughts. Maybe one or two details, but not overly fact-heavy. In fact, you should find the Gettysburg Address online, print it out, and tape it to your cubicle wall as a reminder what can be accomplished in 278 words.
- It needs to have enough detail to get the point across, but not so much that there’s nothing left to talk about in conversation. You want to introduce the premise, but not answer the questions you’ll raise.
- Guest intros should include their name, where they are (joining us in the studio/on the phone from _____ etc.) and their credentials, but not their entire resume.
- Try to imagine how you’d explain the show to someone who knows nothing about it . Why is this subject interesting and why are we talking about it now?
- Read the intro aloud to yourself. The intro is meant to be spoken, not read on paper. Sentences should be short. They should contain one thought.