Story viability checklist. Whether and how to pursue?
1) Imagine the maximum. What is the best story you could get if everything goes your way, you have no limitations? Make a list to get maximum story.
2) What are the minimums? What are your limitations?
If you have a decent story left, go after it. If you don't move on.
3) Figure out legitmate sources and access to those sources.
4) Story has to be fresh and timely. Don't mistake timeliness with immediacy.
5) Story has to be manageable. HAs to have a centre driven by singular question; the rest is supporting material.
6) Story has to have credibility.
7) Want stories to be concrete, not speculative. Cannot answer a speculative question, just a bunch of talking heads.
8) Have, ideally, action of some sort or acutallity. Something in the real world.
9) Story built around a person, they have to be able to carry that weight and represent a bigger issue.
10) Have tension. Not conflict necessarily, but a reason to care about the story.
11) Need an outlet that can take your story. Bigger deal for freelancers, but still applies to journos in newsrooms - does outlet cover that issue/in geographic region?