Credit: Pixabay

Regardless of how interesting or engaging the body of a story may be, a lacklustre headline and standfirst can fail to tempt a reader to go any further.

This is a particular challenge for long-form pieces, where reporters have to resist the urge to give away too much information too soon, but still have to give them a reason to invest.

Paul Bradshaw shares some best examples for grabbing a reader's attention, in this article for Online Journalism Blog. Starting with a question can be a good way to set the scene.

"Most long stories raise an implicit question in the reader: By starting with a person, or a place, or an action, the question that is implied is 'Why is this person/place/scene important?' But sometimes you raise an explicit question," he writes.

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