Freelance Journalism: How to Pitch and Write Successful Features

How to build a compelling feature pitch – and deliver on it

This one-day freelance journalism course will help you land the commission – and deliver a knock-out feature to deadline and brief.

What you’ll learn: How to generate ideas, land commissions and write brilliant features

What makes a great feature? How do you come up with ideas and successfully pitch them to editors? We’ll discuss how the best in the business conjure concepts that keep you reading to the end, equip you to think critically while assessing the current features landscape, and help you build a toolkit for developing winning ideas.

Pitching ideas whether in-person or via email can be daunting. We’ll work on building your confidence in both, leaving you feeling ready to speak up in ideas meetings or hit send on that email pitch you’ve been drafting for weeks. With insights from experienced journalists, you’ll learn what editors want (and don’t want), take part in a mock features conference, and put your new knowledge into action with a hands-on pitch writing exercise.

You’ll examine what makes a great feature before we take you through the key principles of feature writing, from how to write engaging introductions to the art of weaving in quotes. You’ll learn how using case studies can bring complex topics to life and how snippets of colour can elevate your work.

How you’ll learn

This three-module freelance journalism course will be led by an experienced editor and trainer who will share their practical expertise through presentations, discussion and practical exercises – ensuring you have opportunity to reinforce your learning and test your understanding. As feature writing can often be a relatively solitary exercise, we lean into the opportunity to bring people together to discuss their experiences.

Who the course is for

This course is for you if you’re a freelance feature writer – or are considering going freelance – and want to build a toolkit of skills and knowledge that will help you bag a commission and deliver on it. You should have professional writing experience.

We also offer a half-day version of this course, Freelance Features Essentials.

Register your interest for this course by contacting PA Media Academy via the button below.

Course Modules

Generating Brilliant Ideas

  1. Exploring feature formats
  2. Generating features ideas
  3. Developing your idea
  4. Regular and returning features
  5. Build your own ideas – practical

Landing Features Commissions

  1. Mock features conference
  2. Pitching basics
  3. What to include in a pitch (and leave out)
  4. What editors really want from writers
  5. Practical pitch writing

Feature Writing Essentials

  1. Structuring your story
  2. The intro: from scene-setting to drop intro
  3. Establishing tone of voice
  4. Sourcing and using quotes
  5. ‘Colour’ and what it constitutes


Freelance journalism course - writer drafting ideas

Freelance Journalism: How to Pitch and Write Successful Features

How to build a compelling feature pitch – and deliver on it

Get in touch

What our students say

View all testimonials

The lifelike interview settings and tasks that PA Media Training deal in replicate perfectly the real-world feel of a tough media interview and help the delegates come out of the day feeling much more confident that they can play an active role in representing their organisation.

Transport for London
, Director of Communications & Corporate Affairs

Being equipped with an NCTJ Diploma does massive favours for your future, and the skills the course taught me are ones I lean on every single day. The simple fact is, I wouldn’t be where I am without that course. 

Alex Barker
, Videographer & Presenter
, The Athletic

I was able to count on excellent teachers and professionals who helped me push my limits and achieve my goals. I was impressed by the quality of the course and the motivation teachers put into it. It was a great experience and I would definitely do it again!

Laure Poncet
, Research Officer
, ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes

What a great session we had on Communicating with Impact. Bridgid shared practical techniques to enhance and develop our communications skills so we can present and speak publicly or to senior stakeholders with confidence and impact.  I speak for my whole team in highly recommending Bridgid Nzekwu if you are after effective and fun communication training.

, Group Legal Director, Corporate Commercial & Compliance

The teaching I received was second to none and despite having no experience whatsoever in journalism, the tutors made sure there was a friendly environment where I felt welcome to ask any questions I needed. I was able to finish the course and go into a job working for The Sun.

Olivia Allhusen
, Junior Journalist
, The Sun

The methods and techniques you learn (and apply) on a daily basis through teaching, coursework and eventually exams crop up again and again in both job applications and jobs themselves – the course content is directly relevant to the realities of the industry. 

James Saunders
, Digital News Reporter
, GB News

Contact us

For more information , simply fill out the form and a member of our team will be in touch.