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Top 5 – Group Writing Project

Posted By Darren Rowse 7th of May 2007 ProBlogger Site News 0 Comments

Top-5It’s time for another ProBlogger Group Writing Project – and this time we’ve got $1001 Cash (USD) up for grabs thanks to our generous sponsors Chitika!

PLEASE READ ALL OF THE INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE SUBMITTING – the process has changed. Particularly pay attention to the instruction to submit NEW posts not previously written ones. Old posts (written before today) won’t be accepted and will not be eligible for a gift. Thanks for your understanding. Also please note that there is ONE entry per participant.

update: This project is now finished. See the full list of submissions of top 5 posts submitted here.

The Topic

This project’s topic is:

‘Top 5’

Your task with this project is to take the theme of ‘Top 5’ in any direction that you’d like to. I’ve chosen this theme because it should be adaptable to most types of blogs. For example a personal blogger could write about their top 5 favorite foods, a celebrity blogger could write about the top 5 things Paris will do when she gets to jail, a tech blogger could rate their top five gadgets of the year, a productivity blogger could write their top 5 ways to save 20 minutes a day etc.

Write it in any style you like, a rant, list, poem, essay, video, pictorial, haiku, podcast….. anything.

Be as creative as you can and take this in any direction you like. You’ll have a much better chance of getting your post noticed if it’s useful and/or interesting to readers and write something relevant to the topic of your blog.

Once you’ve written your post simply follow the process for participating that I’ve outlined below (please note – to be eligible for the gifts from our sponsors you need to follow the guidelines below).

The Prize

For this project I decided to experiment with having just the one larger prize instead of lots of smaller ones.

As a result at the end of the week I’ll be randomly choosing one lucky participant to win $1001 USD in Cash which has been kindly donated by Chitika. Over the week in each of the daily summary posts I’ll be sharing a reason that I think Chitika is great (and in doing so will come up with my own ‘Top 5’.

Thanks also to those others who offered to sponsor this week. As I mentioned – there were many offers and I really grappled with which one to choose.

The Other (Real) Reason to Participate

Prizes are great – but the real reason to get involved in this type of project is that it has the potential to find you some new readers, make some new blogging friends and put your blog out there.

Every time I run these projects I get emails from bloggers telling me that they:

  • had big traffic days
  • found new blogs that they just love
  • had their posts get to the top of digg and other bookmarking sites

Of course not every entry goes viral as a result of participating – but it’s been a beneficial experience for many previous participants as hundreds of bloggers take part.

The Key to Participating

One last thing before I tell you HOW to participate.

These projects work best when those participating don’t only submit posts of their own but when they read and interact with others who submit posts. Here’s how you can do this:

  • Read the submissions of others
  • Make friends with those you like the submissions of (comment, email – get to know them)
  • Link up to those who you resonate with (some bloggers write a top 5 or 10 list each day of the submissions that they like the best)
  • Bookmark, Stumble and Vote for those you resonate with

The people who get the most out of these projects are those who throw themselves deeply into them.

How To Participate

Here’s how to participate and put yourself in the running for the prize (and to get a little exposure for your blog along the way). Please read this as it has changed slightly since last time (this time submissions are not to be sent via my contact form but via another form – please read on):

Please note – one entry per person – and not per blog. Please only submit NEW posts.

1. Write a ‘top 5’ post

  • Be as creative as you’d like – take it in any direction you want as long as it relates to the topic.
  • Give your post a good title. Once all the posts are listed it’ll only be your title that sets it apart from others. It doesn’t have to have the words ‘review’ and or ‘preview’ in the title.
  • Feel free to write your post in your own first language.
  • Please consider putting a link back to this post on your post so that your readers know you’re participating. You don’t have to do this – but it’d be appreaciated to help grow the project.

2. Let us Know about your post

  • Once you’ve posted your post let me know about it by filling in ‘this form’ (now removed as the project is closed).
  • Please fill the form in accurately as the way you enter it is the way it’ll appear and due to the numbers participating I can’t edit it for everyone! The detail that you add will appear in the post (although I’ll be moderating out spam/offensive stuff).
  • Include your post title as you wish it to appear, the post’s URL (not your blog’s front page) and your name (or alias). All of this will be published.
  • To be eligable for the prize I need a valid email address – this will be kept secure and private ad will not be published.
  • Submissions must be received by me the the end of Thursday 10 May (as long as it’s still Thursday where you send it from I’ll accept it). If they come in after Thursday they won’t be included in the list and will not be in the running for the prize.

3. I will post 2 links to your post

  • In the day or two after you let me know about your post I’ll post a link to it in two places. Firstly there will be a daily list of the submissions from the last 24 hours. Secondly there will be a central list of all submissions for the project so we can see everything on one page.
  • I’ll post my final list of submissions on Friday and will announce those who receive the prize.

4. Surf Surf Surf

  • This is where you take over. Surf the submissions received. Leave comments, make connections with other ProBlogger readers, bookmark them and enjoy reading what others have to say.

5. Link Link Link

  • There is no formal ‘judging’ as this is not a competition. Instead – I encourage you to surf through the submissions at the end of the week and announce your own winners on your own blog. Name a top 5 or so and share the link love.
  • Probably the best part of the last group project was the amount of inter-linking I see happening between participating bloggers as a result of their posts. It’s obvious that people found new blogs through it and that the benefits of participating was way beyond getting a link from me but flowed on to a lot of new connections and links between other bloggers.

6. Prize

  • On Friday I’ll randomly select the participant to win the $1001 from Chitika and will post the winner at this point. The rest of us can muse over what could have been and then we’ll get ourselves ready for next months project.

I can’t wait to read everyone’s top 5 list – don’t forget to submit it here.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
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