"Spring has sprung, the grass is riz I wonder where my baby is?"--as my mother used to say when she would wake us up in the mornings (yea, it was as popular as you might think).
Spring sunshine means it's time for another installment of The Write-Away Contest and this month's topic is vacations. Getaways, taking it easy, favorite places to go, great trips--all are fair game. Your entry could be a personal essay, a helpful tip or a travel piece, but as always, whatever format you choose all entries will be judged on the quality of writing, applicability to the topic and overall ability to engage the reader.
Here are the rules:
1. Write a post or find one in your archives about vacations, getaways or travel. Email your post's permalink to me at: scribbit at gmail.com before Wednesday May 16th (that means the deadline is midnight on Tuesday May 15th). If you fail to meet the May 15th deadline I will still gladly publish the link to your post and include it in the list of entries but it will not be judged. I reserve the right to reject submissions if they fail to meet the topic or if they contain objectionable content.
2. Publish a link to the contest page here at Scribbit in either your entry post or in a separate post.
3. Check back here on Friday May 18th when I will post a complete list of the entries along with the Write-Away Winner.
The Lovely Meredith from Poppy Fields has graciously agreed to be this month's guest judge. Blogging from southern France where she lives with her two daughters and French-born husband, Meredith is uniquely qualified to judge posts on travel and will act as a blind judge--she will see only the text of each entry and will know neither the entrant's name or blog.
As a bonus, here are three tips for writing a winning post from one of the past judges:
Spell check, spell check, spell check. If something is underlined and you can't figure out why change it until the underline goes away. Sometimes it's a okay to ignore a grammatical rule in order to onvey expression but a good rule of thumb is: If you know why it's underlined and choose to do it anyway because it adds to your voice, leave it. If you have no idea why it's underlined, it needs to be fixed. Pay attention to mistakes not caught by spell check, like mixing up "to" and "too," "its" and "it's," and "your" and "you're." Good writing with grammatical errors is like serving a gourmet dinner on a dirty plate. Don't do it.
Don't enter something that was obviously written for another purpose. Prior entries are fine if they fit the theme, but not if it was obviously a popular meme. And speaking of the theme . . . honor it. Some past entries have had nothing to do with the theme, others were like six degrees of separation--the topic of the paper was related to topic A, which is related to topic B, which is sort of like topic C, which is sometimes seen with the actual theme of the contest. I kept expecting Kevin Bacon to show up somewhere.
Include background details. Remember that the contest is judged blindly and the judges can't see the rest of your blog. If some detail is central to the point of your piece, include it, even if your regular readers already know about it. You don't have to give a long story, just a brief explanation so the judge can follow the plot. One good example is adding "my daughter," rather than just mentioning someone her name.
The prize you'll be playing for this month is an all-expense paid trip to Alaska. Just kidding. Though that would be SOME prize wouldn't it? No, the prize is a selection of Alaskan chocolates from Alaska Wild Berry Products lovingly selected, packed and mailed to you by your favorite Alaskan blogger (tell me I'm your favorite Alaskan blogger). In addition, the first place winner may take home this lovely Write-Away Winner button suitable for all occasions and sidebars:
Technorati tags: travel, contests, writing, vacations, Write-Away Contest