"Once upon a time there was an old sow with three little pigs, and as she had not enough to keep them, she sent them out to seek their fortune. The first that went off met a man with a bundle of straw and said to him, 'Please, man, give me that straw to build me a house;" which the man did, and the little pig built a house with it. Presently came along a wolf, and knocked at the door, and said, —"
You recognize this classic children's story at once, but do you recall how it ends? The setup speaks to that little kid inside who wants to find out what becomes of the pigs.
The story teller hooks you in one short paragraph, with compelling characters (homeless piglets!), a perilous quest (a straw house, really?) and imminent danger (nothing good can come from a wolf at the door).
You can use this storytelling technique to lure in your readers and pique their curiosity. The headline, deck and lead make an effective triple hook. If we were featuring our piglets, for example, we might write:
Sow Leaves Offspring Homeless
Three little pigs build shelters using questionable materials
In this quaint English village, it is not uncommon to see young farm animals put out by their penniless parents and forced to find their own way in the wicked world. It takes a village to be sure, as vendors kindly supplied three wee piggies with materials to build shelter. Sadly, there's no silk lining in this sow's purse, with disturbing reports that some piglets were rendered homeless again by a long-winded wolf. Village elders are debating solutions such as better building codes and more vigilant constable patrols.
Alas, you will have to read the story to find out their fate. I can tell you this, you will be relieved to read, "and lived happy ever afterwards"