Ways to Win a 25 Words Or Less Competition
Words Or Less Competition (WOLs) are writing competitions where the entrants must abide by a strict word count while composing an interesting piece. People who participate in WOLs as a hobby are called compers. These types of competitions can typically be found online or in magazines. A WOL competition will have a word count and a theme. An example could be “Why do you love your mom in 25 words or less”.
A favorite of serious compers and marketers, WOLs are an easy way to make money. Since it is only 25 words or less, formulating an entry is easy for anybody. Here are some tips to make your WOL entry much better:
Brainstorming and Drafting for Words of Less Competitions – After you have received the competition guidelines, it is important to jot down as many ideas as possible. Most entrants submit their first idea. But in order to stand out from competition, your idea must be truly unique. This will take more time than just writing down what pops up in your head.
When looking for ideas, you should also determine the reason why the promoter is having the contest in the first place. Typically a WOL competition promotes a brand, so having an idea that revolves around it would be ideal. When writing your entry, you should also mention the product or service. This lets the judges know that you are familiar with their brand. It may seem slightly cheesy to advertise their product. However, it may be the key to winning the contest.
After you have decided on an idea, you can then try to write about it to see if it works. Write down your intentions in as few words as possible but do not worry if it exceeds the word limit at first.
Read, Revise, Rewrite Repeat! – After you have finished brainstorming and writing your first draft, it is important to read your entry and edit it. If your first draft is twice as long as the word limit, you will have to begin to edit it down further. If it is too short, you may need to add more descriptive words to convey your meaning better. You should also try not to use passive voice since it gets to be wordier than an active one. To shorten your entry, you should think about combining sentences, removing unnecessary words and use contractions. With writing that is this short, it is also important to not lose a specific voice whether it is playful, jolly or serious.
Using Poetry – Certain serious compers use rhyming as a way to stand out from competitors while others believe that it is a way to get overlooked. If the topic is serious it may be best to refrain from rhyming however if it humorous and light, weaving in a few rhyming words could be beneficial.
Double Check Your Entry – Before turning in your entry, you must spellcheck and check the grammar. Having glaring spelling and grammar errors, can get you automatically disqualified. To increase your chances of winning, you should follow instructions to a tee and not exceed the word limit, do not submit in all-CAPS and try turning in your entry early.