Becoming a Public Relations Writer: Strategic Writing for Emerging and Established Media, 6th Edition (Paperback) book cover

Becoming a Public Relations Writer

Strategic Writing for Emerging and Established Media, 6th Edition

By Ronald D. Smith


408 pages | 16 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9780367281571
pub: 2019-10-11
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Hardback: 9780367281595
pub: 2019-10-11
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The sixth edition of Becoming a Public Relations Writer continues its place as an essential guide to the writing process for public relations practice.

Smith provides comprehensive examples, guidelines, and exercises that allow students to both learn the fundamentals of public relations writing and practice their writing skills. Ethical and legal issues are woven throughout the text, which covers public relations writing formats for both journalistic and organizational media.

This new edition updates and expands its coverage of writing for digital and social media—including blogs, websites and wikis, as well as social networking (Facebook), microblogging (Twitter), photo sharing (Instagram and Snapchat) and video sharing (YouTube). This range reflects the current landscape of public relations writing, preparing undergraduate students for a public relations career.

Becoming a Public Relations Writer is a trusted resource for courses in public relations, media writing, and strategic communication. Previous editions of this text have been adopted by more than 190 colleges and universities in the U.S. and among other English-speaking nations.

Complimentary online materials are provided for both instructors and students; instructors have access to support materials such as test banks, chapter overviews, and a sample syllabus, while students will benefit from career prep resources such as ethics codes, an overview of professional organizations, and sample news packages. Visit the Companion Website at


"Smith remains strong in his contributions to teaching traditional media (fliers, brochures, newspaper editorials, etc.). There is zero issue to be taken with his choice of content to include as important, nor with his sensible approach to conveying information." -- Deborah Bowen, University of South Florida

Table of Contents

Part I: Principles of Effective Writing

  1. Writing…and What It Means to You
  2. Effective Writing
  3. Persuasive and Ethical Communication
  4. The Writing Process
  5. News: The Basis for All Strategic Communication
  6. News Writing Style
  7. Part II: Paid, Earned, Owned and Shared Media

  8. Social Media and Wiki
  9. Website and Blog
  10. Fact Sheet and Advisory
  11. Print News Release
  12. Broadcast News Release
  13. Transmedia News Package
  14. Advocacy and Opinion
  15. News Feature
  16. Brochure, Newsletter and Corporate Report
  17. Donor Appeals
  18. Speeches, Presentations and Interviews
  19. Public Relations Advertising

About the Author

Ronald D. Smith is Professor Emeritus of Public Communication at SUNY Buffalo State, USA, where he formerly served as Chair of the Communication Department and Associate Dean of the School of Arts and Humanities. He is an accredited member of the Public Relations Society of America. Ron has written two other textbooks, Strategic Planning for Public Relations and (as co-author) MediaWriting, as well as an introductory book Public Relations: The Basics.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Business Writing
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Marketing / General
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Public Relations
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Communication Studies