Saturday, May 31, 2014

The bigger picture

When you write obituaries for a living, it's all too easy to become a creature of habit. You may ask family/friends the same questions over and over. Perhaps you use particular adjectives or phrases so often that they've become cliche. Or maybe you focus so much on the writing of an obit that you never think about examining the deceased's life in a new way (slideshows, audio interviews, video collages, Twitter tributes).

When this happens, it's a good idea to take a step back and start looking at the entire cemetery rather than the individual tombstone.

In the comments, please share your tips for bringing a fresh point of view to an obit. Do you read the competition? Study historical examples? Turn to technological upgrades for new ideas? How do you come up with new and interesting ways to tell the deceased's story?