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How to Improve Your Contest Writing

Make Your Contest Writing Stronger

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If you would like to win more writing contests, you can work on improving the quality of your writing. About.com offers some amazing advice on how to improve your contest writing. Use these tips from across About.com's network to be a stronger writing contest entrant.

1. What Is an Essay?

Before you start entering essay contests, it's a good idea to have a firm grasp on what an essay really is. Richard Nordquist, About.com's Guide to Grammar and Composition, covers what essays are, how they are organized, and how you can bring your own personality into them.

2. How to Write a Five Paragraph Essay

I learned how to write a five paragraph essay in high school, but I didn't get a lot of use out of it afterwards -- until I started entering essay contests. Grace Fleming, About.com's Guide to Homework Tips, covers what you need to know to write a strong five paragraph essay.

Even if you don't use a five paragraph format to write your essay contest entries, much of the advice on how to build a logical essay is useful no matter what format you use.

3. How to Write a Personal Essay

Many writing contests are not just looking for great prose, they want to hear about your personal experiences. Deb Peterson, About.com's Guide to Adult Education, shares some tips on how to write an effective personal essay.

4. How to Write an Argumentative Essay

Another type of writing contest is one that asks you to make a case for something that you believe in, for a product you love, or for an opinion that you want to share with the world. Learn how to write an effective essay that makes an argument with Deb Peterson's article.

5. Basic Rules of Punctuation

Brushing up on the basic rules of using commas, apostrophes, and other punctuation can help your writing be much more professional and easier to read. Richard Nordquist shares some basic tips on how to use punctuation properly to make your writing contest entries stronger.

6. How the Writing Process Works

Creating a good writing environment can help you clear your mind and get down to the work of creating a powerful, moving writing contest entry. Richard Nordquist walks you through the process of writing effectively and how to create a conducive writing environment in your own home.

7. How to Brainstorm Ideas

Once you're ready to get down to the task of starting your writing contest entries, you'll need to come up with good ideas. Brainstorming is an excellent way to find the perfect topic for a writing contest entry. Grace Fleming's article walks you through two different methods of brainstorming -- pick the one that works best for you!

8. Discovery Strategy: Probing Your Topic

Another way you can generate ideas for writing contest entries is by "probing your topic." Richard Nordquist shares some creative ways to come up with new and interesting perspectives on the subject of the contest.

9. 10 Quick Tips to Improve Your Writing

Some very small changes can make a big difference in the power of your writing. Richard Nordquist shares ten easy things that you can do to make a bigger slash in your writing contest entries.

10. How to Use Transitions to Create Essay Flow

One of the important aspects of any writing contest entry is that your writing flows smoothly from one idea to the next. Grace Fleming covers how to use transitions effectively to create flow in your essay contest entry.

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