Profile stories spice up news writing by relating to readers personally. See our top picks of articles about examples of profile stories, plus prompts.
I enjoy writing stories. So when I was recruited to be a news writer for our school paper, I was utterly bored with how serious it sounded. Not to mention the many dos and don’ts when writing. Fortunately, that’s also when I discovered profile stories. Through them, I can write news in a more familiar style. See these best examples of profile stories to learn more about this topic.
- Articles About Examples of Profile Stories
- 1. A Father’s Pain, a Judge’s Duty, and a Justice Beyond Their Reach by Barry Siegel
- 2. Thomas Kano: Capturing Authenticity in Film by Noah Kuhn
- 3. Wherever He Hangs His Hat, John Lydon Remains a National Treasure by Thomas Gerbasi
- 4. Who Is the ‘Merchant of Death?’ by Ashley Hayes
- 5. The U.Q. Graduate Who Cracks Cold Cases by the University of Queensland
- Prompts for Articles About Examples of Profile Stories
Articles About Examples of Profile Stories
1. A Father’s Pain, a Judge’s Duty, and a Justice Beyond Their Reach by Barry Siegel
“He reflects on what the law accomplishes, what the law can’t accomplish. He loves the law but does not worship it. He believes it does not have the answer to everything. In matters full of ambiguity, he suggests, there may be no good solution. ‘Black and white answers are not always what’s needed,’ he says. ‘But sometimes they’re the only answer.'”
Siegel writes his article with a compelling narrative describing Judge Robert Hilder’s unease at Paul Wayment’s taking of his own life. The Wayment case tells the story of a dead son and a father convicted of negligence. The article follows how the judge spent his day, sharing his thoughts with the readers so the audience can understand his plight. Then, it explains Wayment’s life and the events leading to the tragedy.
The article discusses more of the case, how Gage Wayment disappeared, the suspicions surrounding Paul Wayment, and how Gage’s body was found. It also follows the court proceedings and the criticisms Judge Hilder faced.
2. Thomas Kano: Capturing Authenticity in Film by Noah Kuhn
“He pours his heart into the entirety of the filming process, laboring for hours each day, constantly striving for an accurate portrayal of his subject that lives up to his own expectations. Kano is diligent in his work and dedicates himself to genuinely understanding and appreciating other people’s stories.”
Kuhn focuses on Thomas Kano’s growth in creating films, describing the filmmaker’s passion and how he keeps his standards when working. He shares how Kano’s drive for cinematic artistry began and how it bloomed into his experiences. Kuhn includes direct quotes from Kano to explain his thought process, highlighting his desire for his audience to learn through his works.
3. Wherever He Hangs His Hat, John Lydon Remains a National Treasure by Thomas Gerbasi
“Spoken like a true American, and Lydon fits the bill, having become a U.S. citizen in 2013. What could be more punk rock than a man described as a ‘national treasure’ in his native England becoming an American citizen? Nothing.”
Gerbasi’s article includes an interview with John Lydon, the lead singer of the 1970s punk band Sex Pistols, as the artist details his experiences in his music career. The article talks much about how Lydon operates when writing lyrics and creating music and how the Sex Pistols is one of the most influential punk bands.
Gerbasi’s report follows Lydon’s career through the musician’s perspective, including how he lived after the group’s disbandment. In the last part of the piece, Gerbasi shares Lydon’s reluctance to be described as one of the U.K.’s national treasures.
4. Who Is the ‘Merchant of Death?’ by Ashley Hayes
“He’s known as the ‘Merchant of Death’ and the ‘Lord of War,’ — an alleged international arms dealer straight out of a cloak-and-dagger spy novel who eluded authorities for years and inspired Hollywood villains.”
Hayes talks about Viktor Bout, an international arms dealer, and his plea for innocence. She shares his background, plus comments from her co-correspondents and other individuals interested in the case. All of these help in painting a detailed picture of the man. She then relays how he was extradited from Thailand to face crimes in the U.S.
Hayes also mentions how Bout inspired Nicolas Cage’s character in the 2005 movie “Lord of War.” At the end of the article, the writer says that Bout receives such attention because although his actions are morally wrong, they are not illegal.
5. The U.Q. Graduate Who Cracks Cold Cases by the University of Queensland
“Despite working on several high-profile cases, Williamson said the cases she is most proud of solving remain – for the most part – outside of public consciousness.”
The article focuses on Dr. Angela Williamson, a forensics expert who solves cold cases. It tells of her most satisfying catch – serial killer Samuel Little, linked to at least 60 murders. The piece follows Dr. Williamson’s humble beginnings, her dreams, and how she assisted in cracking many cold cases. The article is an excellent example of how to make readers want to study at the University of Queensland, as Dr. Williamson is living proof of their graduates’ success in their fields.
Prompts for Articles About Examples of Profile Stories
1. Interesting Legal Cases: A Look Inside
Like one of the examples above, pick a gripping case that touches the gray areas of the law and makes the readers question whether there should be changes in the legal proceedings. The case you pick can be something that made headlines or received little recognition.
Write in a way that lets your audience feel as if they’re walking in the prisoner’s shoes to get a sense of the injustice the inmate endured. You can also write from the perspective of the prisoner’s close family member, the judge, or the attorneys.
2. The Supporting Character
Many profile stories focus on the stars of a show or the main characters. So, break the tradition and create a fascinating article about the supporting character that helps the main character become victorious. For instance, narrate the life of a wife who serves as the pillar in her husband’s booming career or a mother’s unwavering love to protect her child’s safety.
3. Survivors: How Tragedies can Create Success
Like best-selling books and movies, subjects that address triumph over horrible situations will always get readers’ attention. In your article, find someone who has overcome a terrible event and ask about how, in some ways, it changed their life for the better. The event can be a personal dilemma like a mental breakdown or something caused by external factors, such as domestic violence.
4. A Controversial Subject: Religion and the LGBTQ+ Community
To stimulate your audience’s interest, pick a controversial topic, such as the clash between religious beliefs and LGBTQ+ acceptance. Analyze the situation in-depth by interviewing individuals on both sides of the matter. In this case, you can find interviews of religious figures that oppose LGBTQ+ equality and also source information from LGBTQ+ activists or charities. Look at both sides of the controversy and discuss where the disagreements occur.
5. A Day in the Life: Daily Habits of Inspiring People
Create an article that looks at the typical “day in the life” of someone who interests you. Make sure to ask them and get permission before you begin, and then you can start researching and writing.
This person can be famous in their field, a friend, or someone who inspires you. Your article will give your readers an insight into how someone’s life plays out, including their privileges and the limitations they experience. Some examples are actors, politicians, and family members. For help editing your articles, we recommend using the best grammar checker. Our round-up profiles these tools and offers discounts.
6. Successful People: How They Became Who They Are
Follow an individual’s journey to success to inspire others and give your readers an idea of how they can be successful in their own way. You can interview a successful individual and detail their beginnings, challenges, and daily habits. Remember that there are various definitions of success, and it’s not always material wealth.
For example, research those who you see as successful. This could be a family member that inspires you, a musician, a celebrity personality, or even a close friend. Decide what success means to you and choose your subject to study.
If you liked this article, you’ll love our guide on the 5 w’s of journalism!
Join over 15,000 writers today
Get a FREE book of writing prompts and learn how to make more money from your writing.