I usually don't take part in competitions. It just gives me heartburn. And forget about winning anything, it leads to negative investment when I lose (aka tub of ice cream to cry my losses into.) But this time was different. The topic of the competition pulled on an emotional chord of my heart that has been rubbed raw this year. The whole process of trying to start Frying Pan Adventures and the conversations it has sparked - with parents, with friends, with journalists, with random people who I suddenly make my Agony Aunts of the moment - those conversations have really made me internalize. And when you're a swamp of gooey, murky, incoherent, nebulous thoughts like I am, internalizing can be shit scary.
I wrote the article and entered the competition for that reason. That, and honestly, after frittering away my life savings on getting a blasted license for the food tours, it would really nice to make even the tiniest bit of money so I can actually record a piddly something on the incomes side of my life profit & loss statement.
So do give the article a read when you're desperately trying to melt into the monitor and look like you're engrossed in reading something official when the boss strolls by. Warning, the article is long and hairy and struggling to decide what it really wants to be. But it is what it is, and I've entered it. Vote by leaving a comment or using the social media 'like' or 'share' buttons at the bottom of the article. OR, if you hate the article to bits...here, let me make place on the boat of haters right next to me - then feel free to not vote. The article was about trying to put perspective on things, and it won't do either of us any good if social media vote-rigging and false-likes and generic comments about 'great clicks!' on a post that is pretty much, photo-less, distorts that perspective.
Here's the article link: http://www.expatsblog.com/contests/17/making-myself-right-at-home
FYI, my personal favourite is this article by an English Lit teacher in Turkey. Incredible writing and she deserves to win. If you have time to read one, and only one article, hands down I'd go with hers.