Guidelines for writing a Radio magazine Facility Showcase
FACILITY SHOWCASE: Ideally, the Facility Showcase article is written by someone involved in the construction or design of the project. This person is intimately familiar with many aspects of the facility's creation and is uniquely qualified to write about it.
In general, a Facility Showcase article is a facility tour in text. Speak directly to the reader as if you were providing a tour to a fellow broadcast engineer or SBE chapter. There is seldom a need to discuss the color choices or layout of the sales area unless there is a tie to the technology that is used. Focus on specific elements such as:
construction challenges (permits, zoning, contractor delays)
equipment selection (define specific needs and how the equipment chosen met those needs)
clever solutions (how you were able to overcome an obstacle or make due with a known limitation)
References to specific products or companies should be kept to a minimum and included only when needed. Discuss the technology that applies to a type of device or system, not how a specific product works.
Radio magazine uses a tutorial style. We want tight copy without unnecessary verbiage. Do not write a narrative manuscript. Do not use humor in a manuscript. Do not use a reporting style of article construction. We rarely run quotes from individuals. You are the authority on this subject.
Do not give your personal opinions unless they are backed by hard and convincing documentation. If you express a personal opinion, clearly identify it as such in the manuscript.
As a general rule include one photo, slide, illustration or chart for every page of manuscript you submit. This is an arbitrary goal, but it reminds authors of the need to provide illustrations of the subject they are covering. Product photographs provided with articles should have a specific need to be included. If the equipment has a unique feature that can be seen in a product shot better than it can be described in the copy, it will be used.
Do not list the names of individual persons involved in a project at a facility unless they add something to the story.
Use the active voice rather than the passive voice in article construction. For example, write "Check all transformers for overheating" rather than "All transformers should be checked for overheating."
General Article Construction
Develop a short and interesting headline for the article. Avoid long, dry headlines. Search for a headline that will make the reader want to learn more.
Use the first paragraph of the story to draw the reader into the article. Avoid beginning the article with dry statistics or broad generalizations. Instead, pick something unique about the material to be presented that will pique the reader's interest. Tell the reader something that he can identify with.
Step the reader through the facility in the body of the article.
Include a complete equipment list. We will edit the list if necessary. Include as many products as you can, even if they seem mundane. Wire, cable, connectors and on-air lights are all important elements of a facility.
Include your byline as you would like to read. For example, "By Bob Smith, CPBE." Include any relevant industry certification designations.
Include information for the author credit at the end. For example, "Smith is the chief engineer of WXYZ, Kansas City." We do not include e-mail addresses, phone numbers or other contact information in the author credit.
Payment for each article is determined by the editor.