Have you heard the saying "Spend a little time now to save a lot of time later"? Well, most of us would say that sorting through an entire year of issues at one time is difficult... especially when the contest deadline is looming. But many hours can be saved then by spending just a few productive minutes now!
If you and/or your staff log your best work from recent issues on a weekly or monthly basis, then you have a full list to pull from when contest season rolls around in January/February!
So let's try a new routine to make contest entry easier.
REVIEW: Take a few minutes to look through or think about your past one or two months' issues.
LOG: Enter some or all of the information about your best work so you can easily find it later. This could include the issue date, page number and the headline, ad, photo, layout or project description.
WORKSHEETS: One tab/worksheet is for Sequoyah Award categories and a second tab/worksheet is for all other award categories.
CATEGORY NAME: You'll find when you click in an empty category field, a dropdown menu arrow appears so you can select the category. Or just type in the category name if that's easier.
CATEGORY RULES: A list of all categories and their rules/requirements for the Better Newspaper Contest are listed on the third tab/worksheet.
OTHER CONTESTS: The rest of OPA's contests are listed on the last tab/worksheet in case you've wondered about entering the monthly ONG & OGE contests, or the annual contests for outstanding reporters (Ray Lokey Award), outdoor writers (Joseph H. Edwards Award), and magazines! Most of those contests award MONEY to the winners and have no entry fee, so it's worth entering!
PREVIOUS MONTHS: When you have time, review all of your issues from earlier in 2020 and add them to this contest log since the contest period is Jan. to Dec. 2020 so six months have already passed.
REMINDER: We'll send you a monthly email reminder to take a few minutes and log the potential contest entries from the previous month.
We hope this method saves you time and helps you to win glorious contest plaques and certificates to adorn your office walls! Thank you to the OPA Awards Committee for suggesting this idea and to David Stringer for the log spreadsheet.