The written word is sexy as hell to me. I mean, I adore writers and their turns of phrase like a car lover does the fine, sleek lines of a Porsche—like an art lover does the passion and intricacies of a Romare Bearden collage. When I worked in an office, I used to clip magazine articles, quotes, and turns of phrase by some of my favorite writers and hang them up on my wall for inspiration. They were tattered, yellowed paper reminders that I was in an industry full of people who wrote incredible prose—writers like Karen Good and Asha Bandele and Lola Ogunnaike and Toure and Paul Beatty and Junot Diaz and dream hampton, and Kelefa Sanneh and Joan Morgan.
Writers with beautiful minds.
Imagine my delight, then, when I ventured online and found an incredible community of bloggers who, too, love to express themselves through the written word! I was—and am!—consistently amazed by the amount of talent flowing all up and through the internet; I can get lost for hours just enjoying the thoughtful posts of my bloggy friends.
To that end, I want to celebrate great writing by kicking off The MyBrownBaby Beautiful Mind Writing Contest. Each month, I’ll post a topic for MyBrownBaby’s readers, and invite participants to write an essay/post inspired by that topic. You’ll have two weeks to write your entry and email to me the URL to your post (or a simple copy-and-paste of your essay if you don’t have a blog); I’ll share your posts with a guest judge who will read your entries, and pick a winner! The winning essay will be featured on MyBrownBaby, and the winner will get both a beautiful prize and a nifty “I'm A MyBrownBaby Beautiful Mind" button for her/his site. I’ll also post links to each of the entries so that MyBrownBaby readers can enjoy the prose of each of MyBrownBaby's Beautiful Mind contest participants.
So, without further ado, I’m going to kick off the first MyBrownBaby Beautiful Mind Writing Contest with the topic “Peace.” My guest judge is Tameka of the lovely Tea & Honey Bread; she’s an incredible writer who not only has a beautiful mind, but an incredible gift of creativity. Indeed, she is donating the prize for this month’s contest—this beautiful handmade necklace. It’s a naturally oxidized 19" copper ladder link chain with a 2" wooden focal embellished with a Czech glass and oxidized copper blossom—a stunning piece Tameka is donating from the collection of handmade jewelry she creates for her Pretty in Peace Etsy site. The retail value for this stunning piece is $32.
Here's how to get in on the action:
1. Write a post on this month's theme then email your post's permalink to me at MyBrownBabyBeautifulMind at gmail.com. (The permalink is the URL of the individual post—not the URL of your blog; to find it, click on the post title or time stamp and copy the URL in the address field. I’ll accept entries through Friday, November 20. If you miss that deadline, I will still publish your link with the list of entries, but it will not be judged. Submissions that fail to meet the topic or that contain objectionable content will be disqualified. Please look for a confirmation email from me saying I received your entry.
2. Publish a link to this MyBrownBaby contest page in your entry post—as a courtesy and to let your blog readers know about the contest. Who knows—maybe they’ll want to join in on the fun!
3. Check back here on Tuesday November 24th, when I will post a complete list of the entries along with the MyBrownBaby Beautiful Mind Winner and three Honorable Mentions.
4. As a “thank you!” I will list all entries along with the first two sentences of each post to give MyBrownBaby readers an idea of what you’ve written. (Please note: To assure you that the judge picks the winner solely on the writing, I will show her only the text of your post—no blog name, no pictures, nothing that might identify you to the judge.) In addition to the featured prize, the winner will get an “I’m A MyBrownBaby Beautiful Mind” button to post on her/his site.