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Extended sub-head for Title IX feature

Discussion in 'Writers' Workshop' started by Illino, Aug 8, 2012.

  1. Illino

    Illino Member

    I am using this as an extended sub-head for a feature we are running later this month about the first coach of girls' team at the local high school.

    And, yes, I know you aren't supposed to start stuff with a quote, but I feel like this approach works as an exception.

    "She would be the first to tell you that story isn't about her," Paula Green three times insisted during an hour-long interview about her late mother, Tracy Smith, the first coach of girls' teams at Small-Town Community High School. "She would say, 'Make sure this is about those first girls who went to state.'" That's because when Mrs. Smith was alive, she never wanted the attention to be focused on her accomplishments, she just wanted her infectious smile to brighten the day of everyone she encountered, and by the time she died on May 25, her influence had spread so far that Paula shook hands with and spoke to her mother's friends and former students for 3 1/2 hours during visitation. Despite Mrs. Smith's position, Paula said, the best stories rarely related to sports, and that's just how her mother would have wanted it.
  2. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    Why the first name on second reference for Green and the courtesy title on second reference for Smith?
  3. Illino

    Illino Member

    That was one area I was hoping to see some opinions about.

    Basically, Smith was always known as Mrs. Smith by almost everyone in town, so I wanted to reflect that at the start of the story, and thought using Paula would keep a consistent personal feel to it.
  4. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    I don't like it, but I can be stodgy about these things. It seems disrespectful to Green, an adult, and stilted on every Mrs. Smith reference, particularly if you plan to keep it up throughout.

    I also don't know that the quote works. It might be more effective if you started with "Make sure this is about those first girls who went to state," then explained it. It's more direct.
  5. flexmaster33

    flexmaster33 Active Member

    I like what you did with it...I think it makes an emotional story connect with readers right from the start. And it like that you chose to go with the Mrs. Smith if that is how she was commonly referred to by people in your community.
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