Here are 20 coronavirus-related story ideas to help you expand your coverage

April 17, 2020

Every weekday morning, in our Covering COVID-19 newsletter, Poynter senior faculty Al Tompkins shares a slate of story ideas and context about the coronavirus.

In the video below, he highlights 20 recent (and a few new) story ideas, adds some fresh context and outlines which types of stories, in general, most resonate with audiences.

20 COVID-19 story ideas

  1. Seed companies are running low, largely because people are planting their own veggies
  2. Pawnshops are expecting big business.
  3. What will people do with their stimulus checks?
  4. Students are paying for empty apartments.
  5. Help parents to talk with their frightened children.
  6. How are virtual classes working out? For schoolchildren and college students?
  7. Experts say that we’re going to gain weight by staying at home.
  8. Pets are gaining weight, too.
  9. Many students are having their internships canceled.
  10. What’s the summer job outlook for young people?
  11. Virtual strip clubs are a thing.
  12. What exactly is an “essential” business?
  13. Exercise equipment is selling big.
  14. Nurses rock! Nursing has been ranked the most ethical profession in Gallup polls for the last 18 years. Will nursing schools see more applications?
  15. Are wild animals acting strange?
  16. Oops! We forgot this one. If you’ve got a story idea to help us fill it in, drop it in the comments below.
  17. Will there be a baby boom?
  18. Prom dresses are going unused. How can you help?
  19. Let’s hear the valedictorian speeches that they never got to give.
  20. People who owe child support will not get stimulus checks.

Related Training

The Role of Jails in the Fight Against Coronavirus – Thursday, April 23, 2020 at 2 p.m. Eastern

In this webinar, Poynter’s Al Tompkins will be joined by Anna Flagg and Joseph Neff, both of the Marshall Project, to discuss the unfolding coronavirus epidemic in jails and prisons. Their piece, “Why Jails are So Important in the Fight Against Against Coronavirus,” published in collaboration with the New York Times’ Upshot, explains how 200,000 people are shuffled in and out of jails on a weekly basis and how this dense traffic can further exacerbate the growing health crisis.


Covering COVID-19 is a daily Poynter briefing about journalism and coronavirus, written by senior faculty Al Tompkins. Sign up here to have it delivered to your inbox every weekday morning.