All right. This is going to be a difficult post to write without seeming like a Self-Congratulatory Braggy Braggart, but I’m going to attempt it anyway since a few of you have asked me about it…
I’ve won multiple writing awards over the past few years. You can see them displayed on the right-hand side of this blog post in the sidebar, if you’re interested in which ones.
Some of you are interested in winning awards too. And I can’t blame you! Not only are they a lot of fun, they also add prestige to your business and can help get you more gigs from better clients. They’re a great thing to have.
I can’t claim to know all the “secrets” to winning (I wish!), but here’s what I do know…
If You Want One: Ask!
If you see that an award is being given out and the award-giver is asking for nominations, ask your readers to vote for you. Don’t be shy!
Remind your readers of the great content you’ve produced for them and ask them to nominate you if they enjoyed reading it. Not everyone will take the time to vote, but, if you’re lucky, enough of them will.
Create Great Content
Focus on quality over quantity. Don’t have a bare writing blog, by any means, but make sure what you do write is top-notch.
I was unsure whether I’d be winning any awards this year because, last year, I didn’t produce as much content as I had in previous years. I was wrong. My readers and those handing out awards took quality into account. It didn’t matter that I didn’t have hundreds of new blog posts — what mattered to them was that the information I did provide was good. (And that’s lovely, I think!).
Stick to One Topic
One thing I do know is that awards are given to blogs with a focus. In my case, my focus is on freelance writing and blogging. I never deviate from those topics. And, therefore, I’m a good contender when the “Best Writing Blogs” award season comes around.
However, writing blogs aren’t the only ones who give out awards. If you write about animal welfare, you could have a chance to win an award in that genre as well — so long as you stick to your topic.
My personal blog, as fun as it is, is likely never going to win any awards. I talk about too many different subjects (mostly related to my personal life). I talk about mental health, vaping, doll collecting, cats, you name it. It’s very scattered and unfocused! And that’s not award-winning material.
LittleZotz Writing had been around for several years before it started winning awards. I didn’t win anything straight out of the gate (I was lucky to have even a few readers!).
Your writing might be award-caliber material, but you’ll have to work hard to get noticed first. So keep writing and keep sharing your content. Focus on building up your readership!
Writing guest posts is also a great way to draw in readers who might not have found you otherwise. It’s not enough to rely on people Googling your work and just happening to stumble onto it. You have to work hard to get yourself “out there.”
Anyway, I hope this helps! 🙂 And big thanks to all of YOU who continue to vote for me each year during Awards’ Season. I hope to see some of your beautiful faces on the lists next year!!
Lauren Spear (née Tharp) is the owner and creator of the multiple award-winning LittleZotz Writing. She’s written hundreds of bylined posts helping freelance writers to become BETTER freelance writers. Thousands if you count all the articles she’s ghostwritten (but she’s not allowed to talk about most of those).