Writing for Business

Aug 20 2013   7:06PM GMT

Bury the lede or bury the lead — and what does it mean, anyway?

Ivy Wigmore Ivy Wigmore Profile: Ivy Wigmore

Which is correct?

interrobang Get the earth-shattering news out first — don’t bury the ___.a. lede
b. lead 

Answer: Either.


The lede (or lead) is the introductory part of an article, designed to get readers’ attention and make them want to continue reading. If you blather along for a paragraph or two and then mention that, for example, Ashton Kutcher and Helen Mirren are dating,* you’re burying the lede.

What you want to do, instead, is get that tantalizing fact out there quickly and imply that there are more stunning revelations to be had for those who read on.

Here’s some advice on how to avoid burying your lede.

*As if. Mirren is married. And probably holding out for Johnny Depp.

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