Thursday, December 4, 2008

With pun in hand

The effects of my current pursuit of a master's degree at Dominican House of Studies are surfacing in unexpected places, as when I gave a headline-writing seminar today at a Washington, D.C., newspaper and unwittingly found myself using theological language.

Discussing how a headline is supposed to describe the story beneath it and at the same time leave room for the reader's curiosity, I said, "A good headline points beyond itself."

I illustrated my talk with a PowerPoint presentation showing examples of some of the headlines I wrote for the New York Post and Daily News, like this one for a story on Bob Dylan's allowing a recording of his to be used in a Victoria's Secret commercial:

Going through my old files last night, I also found a full-page story, likewise in the Post, containing headlines I wrote on the box-office success of "Troy." I always liked doing literary headlines and came up with this one after being unable to think up a pun on the word "Illiad":