Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Contests: winning, losing and otherwise

Last year I entered and won the American Mother’s Inc. State poetry contest. It is a fabulous organization for women. I was honored to win and was invited to their luncheon, allowed to read my poem and grateful to meet many friendly and inspiring mothers.

I also entered a few other poetry contests last year, most with the announcement of winners in February – this month. I suppose it could be a saving grace that the contests do not send letters to all but one of the entrants declaring “You Lost.” Posting the picture, bio and poem of the winner on their website is enough heartbreak. (Don’t worry. I have a comforting reserve of Valentine chocolates.)

I received one peculiar notice announcing the winner, not me, but stating my poem was under consideration for publication and I’d be notified by such-and-such date. It looked suspiciously form letterish and having suffered so recently from several losses in a row, I didn’t feel encouraged by it. I guess I’m not in the mood to be strung along.

Speaking of mood, I was thinking how I could turn mine around. Months ago, in a weak moment, I allowed myself to think of what I might do with any ‘winnings’ (read: money) – I thought how fun it would be to share the wealth – you know, have a contest and offer a bona fide cash prize.
So today when sitting down to blog or post or whatever the verb is for what I’m doing, I thought, ‘so much for the blog contest’. The generous-fighter-let-nothing-stop-me girl who is always trying to get more attention said, (you can probably see this coming)- “Have the contest anyway!”

So here goes: Leave a comment. Tell me what you’ve won, lost or otherwise (it can be anything – writing contests, radio contests, 3rd grade spelling bee – I’m really flexible here) Feb 28th I’ll announce the winner of a $20 Amazon gift card. Become a follower for an extra entry. Thanks for reading & good luck.

17 comments:

dadleavitt said...

You are so funny! Can't say that I have one any contests, not sure I have tried to win any...good luck!

Joan Sowards said...

Back in the 90's, I entered and won 3rd place a short story contest. My story appeared in a little book called "A Merry Little Christmas" published by Covenant Communications.

When about 10 yrs-old I won a topsy-turvy doll at a Relief Society bizarre. Sigh. Those wonderful RS bizarre days are gone.

I'm already a follower, but I made those wonderful cake balls you posted the recipe for. They turned out yummy and my boys couldn't eat them fast enough. That should count as an extra entry!

Karen Adair said...

I won a writing contest back in 11th grade for an essay I wrote about freedom for the Veteran's of Foreign War. There was a banquet and everything. Pretty cool. The only other contest I can remember winning is at a roller skating rink when I was like 8. I won a t-shirt. Don't recall what happened to the t-shirt since then....

I'm becoming a follower as well because I truly appreciate the heartache and sometimes victory that comes from going out on a limb to at least try. If you don't then you're guaranteed to fail. :)

hopeandme said...

I won first place for a poem in tenth grade, and I won bracelet at Girl Scouts for tying knots the fastest with my hands behind my back.

Nothing else.

barbara b

Lynn Parsons said...

I actually won an election in high school for student council--no one else was running from band!

My biggest loss was also in high school--didn't practice enough, so I didn't make jazz band my junior year. You can bet I overprepare for things now!

Also a new follower!

Valerie Ipson said...

The highlight of my winning career is 4th grade Spelling Bee, though ever since I starting in the blogging scene I've been very lucky in that I've won several books in blog drawings. So be afraid all you other entries.

TeriP said...

What an enjoyable blog - I love your writing...I won a game at a baby shower this past summer and I never win anything so I was happy.

Peggy said...

Growing up I won a radio contest - be the first caller and win - for four tickets to the Ogden Pioneer Days Rodeo. What a great time!

As a teenager I won a sewing machine in a sewing contest. I still have it and still use it. I am also a follower of your blog.

Peggy said...

Growing up I won a radio contest - be the first caller and win - for four tickets to the Ogden Pioneer Days Rodeo. What a great time!

As a teenager I won a sewing machine in a sewing contest. I still have it and still use it. I am also a follower of your blog.

Peggy Urry

Anna del C. Dye said...

That is great news. Congratulations on your wining.

Anna del C. Dye
Author of "The Silent Warrior Trilogy"
http://www.annadelc.com

Jennifer said...

Sometimes it is so much easier to remember failures, so your thought-provoking entry really made me ponder how much of a "winner" I have been throughout my life--from my writing award as a second grader, my public speaking wins in high school, and my piano playing "gold cups".
It is funny how a lot of these winning moments fade and the everyday wins of a great family home evening or a compliments about dinner become the best winning moments.
Thanks for your friendship and for giving me some great pondering time!
Jennifer

Thompson Family said...

About a year ago my family and I went to a grand opening for a bounce house. I entered one of the drawings and they actually pulled my name from the box! I couldn't believe it. I won free lazer tag games for my boys. I never win. Actually, that's not true. I do recall winning a baseball signed by Luis Gonzales at an opening ceremony for my boys' baseball league.

Wow. It's funny how good it makes you feel just thinking about it.

Love the web site Tam. You go girl.

Melody said...

I take surveys and usually when I do my name is entered in different contest, a few months ago I won $100 American Express gift card from one of the contest, it was pretty cool.

Cherene said...

When I got accepted into the MC program, I felt like I had "won" a sought-after spot in a competitive program--does that count? :)

Loree said...

I would say I am rarely the lucky winner of anything but recently I attended a scrapbooking class to learn about how to use my cricut die cutting machine. I was feeling pretty lucky to even get into this class because it has always been full when I have called to get into it. But this one morning I called in they had a cancellation just a minute before so i snagged a seat for the class. HOORAY for me! Then to make it even better I won the raffle at the end of the class where the prize was a pricey new cartridge for my machine! I shouted for joy! I couldn't believe my luck! It was a happy day that still brings a smile to my face!
PS... I sure love ya Tamara!

Melody said...

FUN! I seem to always win those silly door prizes at Pampered Chef, etc. parties, and then I feel so guilty because I never buy anything! But one funny contest I won was guessing the correct number of M&Ms in a jar at Walmart. Matt and I figured there were probably 2 bags' worth of M&Ms, so we went and found a package, calculated the number in each bag, and got it right! We won a cooler filled with stuff to have a 4th of July picnic. Silly that we went to such lenghts for a dumb prize, huh? But your prize... THAT is worth winning!

Matt Peterson said...

Tamara, I love your blog! Melody told me about it and I'm glad she did.

Now, for the shameless entry into your contest... I once won a $500 gift card at a company rally -- I sang "La Vida Loca" like William Hung of American Idol fame. In addition to the gift card, I received a boisterous standing ovation from 300+ fellow employees! Good times.

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