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Obituary Writing Tips


Basics You Should Know When Choosing Free-of-charge Obituaries

Letting others know of an individual's passing can be done in a couple of different ways. A detailed death notice may be written up and published both online and in area newspapers, or sent out as formal announcements. Most papers will offer free obituaries with certain restrictions.

There is a difference between an obit and a death notice. The first is usually a condensed biography written by a member of the newspaper's staff, stating just the basic details. The second is a more intimate accounting generally penned by someone who knew the deceased on a personal level.

Generally, a newspaper has a standard form that they use to generate the obit. These articles are usually statements of facts such as the individual's name, dates of birth and death, home town, city of residency, school and job history as well as a list of any surviving family members. Most papers will post these notices without any charge.

Some smaller papers allow a little more leeway in their submissions. If the family wishes, they can include extra information like the cause of death, organizations and associations to which the deceased may have belonged, accomplishments and service details. Other publications sometimes have this option available for a small fee.

A lot of people choose to include these articles as part of the funeral service programs. This practice provides each person in attendance a copy of the obit for their own purposes. Some use the version printed in the papers, while others opt to write a more personalized one.

These announcements are often run in newspapers that serve the various cities where the deceased was born or had lived throughout their life. This allows friends and associates in those areas to receive the news and an provides an opportunity for them to pay their respects. It is usually up to the family whether or not this option is pursued.


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