Competitions

Ogdred Weary

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#1
I was thinking about this earlier listening to a podcast where a writer got his break entering a writing competition partially overseen by Stephen King, when he was informed he'd won he had forgotten he had entered, clearly assuming he wouldn't win as most people would, quite realistically do so. A friend won a play writing competition years ago but was then informed he was the only person who had entered, which kind of burst his bubble. Obviously it was on a much smaller scale than the Stephen King competition but it got me thinking about competitions in general.

Another friend won gig tickets from a local radio station because he was the only person to call in. We are surrounded by competitions of all sorts, whether they are some kind of challenge or "luck of the draw" types often used to promote products or businesses but how many people actually enter those internet/phone/postal competitions? I assume most people most of the time just assume they'll never win. Has anyone here ever entered one or even won?

My mum would enter competitions on our behalf when we were kids, we were "runners up" in naming one of the Weetabix skinhead characters in the 80s and I got a t-shirt, I've no idea what "runner up" meant in that instance or how genuine it was, perhaps they had already chosen a name? What if you only had stupid or crap suggestions. She also won a Pocahontas soundtrack and cheap backpack for my sister, again those were some kind of "runner up" prize, no idea how many were given out. Those two are the only wins I remember.
 

escargot

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#2
I used to do competitions as a hobby and won lots of mad stuff. Better prizes were a posh weekend away, a washing machine, cases of beer and supplies of other food and drinks. We also won loads of teeshirts, vouchers, baseball caps, chocolates, evenings out and meals, all sorts.

Stuff was arriving most weeks. The kids never knew what we'd get next! Great fun.
 

Frideswide

Fortea Morgana :)
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#4
I enter stuff and win :) wine, limited edition whisky, cheese truckles, lego, craft supplies.

:)
 
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#8
I was thinking about this earlier listening to a podcast where a writer got his break entering a writing competition partially overseen by Stephen King, when he was informed he'd won he had forgotten he had entered, clearly assuming he wouldn't win as most people would, quite realistically do so. A friend won a play writing competition years ago but was then informed he was the only person who had entered, which kind of burst his bubble. Obviously it was on a much smaller scale than the Stephen King competition but it got me thinking about competitions in general.

Another friend won gig tickets from a local radio station because he was the only person to call in. We are surrounded by competitions of all sorts, whether they are some kind of challenge or "luck of the draw" types often used to promote products or businesses but how many people actually enter those internet/phone/postal competitions? I assume most people most of the time just assume they'll never win. Has anyone here ever entered one or even won?

My mum would enter competitions on our behalf when we were kids, we were "runners up" in naming one of the Weetabix skinhead characters in the 80s and I got a t-shirt, I've no idea what "runner up" meant in that instance or how genuine it was, perhaps they had already chosen a name? What if you only had stupid or crap suggestions. She also won a Pocahontas soundtrack and cheap backpack for my sister, again those were some kind of "runner up" prize, no idea how many were given out. Those two are the only wins I remember.
Keep entering competitions and you will win eventually. A lot of people will give up on the tickets competitions when they don't win after a few entries.
 

Bigphoot2

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#10
When I was at primary school I won a bar of chocolate in a writing competition. At secondary I won a bible in a writing competition - hasn't inspired a literary career yet.
And I'm celebrating my 20th lottery win since November - calm down it's just £5.10. I'm winning the big one in instalments.
 

James_H

And I like to roam the land
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#11
I used to do competitions as a hobby and won lots of mad stuff. Better prizes were a posh weekend away, a washing machine, cases of beer and supplies of other food and drinks. We also won loads of teeshirts, vouchers, baseball caps, chocolates, evenings out and meals, all sorts.

Stuff was arriving most weeks. The kids never knew what we'd get next! Great fun.
I know someone who does this, a former neighbour of mine from Oxford. She gets a lot of random stuff. I think the monetary outlay is at least as much as the value of the stuff she wins, but I guess it adds a bit of fun to life?

Here's a relevant classic from Tony Hancock.
 

Krepostnoi

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#12
My mum and dad won a cruise on the QE2 with Jimmy Savile. I dread to think what the second prize was... They also won a dish washer. Not in the same competition, though.

Me, I consistently turn a profit on the National lottery. Send me a £10 postal order via PM and I'll share my foolproof system.
 

maximus otter

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#13
I once won a small penknife as second prize in a competition to write an advertising slogan for a new air rifle.

Every year my wife and l “win” £208 on the National Lottery, because every week neither of us buys a ticket.

maximus otter
 

Lord Lucan

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#19
I once won a refrigerator worth $5000. Oddly enough, this also has a slight Fortean twist to it.
Here in Australia we have R.S.L Clubs ( The Returned and Services League ) which are clubs, some small, some immense that are a charitable organization which assists men & women who have served or who are serving in the defence forces.
These clubs sell food and alcohol, have poker machines, often have live bands and entertainment etc.
The one we occasionally go to to eat was having a competition in the weeks leading up to Christmas where for every meal purchased, you received a ticket. These tickets you then put into boxes of your choice of prize. The prizes were: $2000 cash, a motorbike, a diamond ring, a fridge and a holiday to the Gold Coast. Over a few weeks we had collected a number of tickets and placed them equally into all of the boxes.
To win, one had to be present on the night, a few nights before Christmas. We went to the club, along with hundreds of others and as we pulled into the carpark I said to my wife, ''I bet we win the bloody fridge.''
The cash was the first to be won, followed by the ring and then the bike. Next thing, my name and membership number was called as the winner of the fridge. I truly had a gut feeling that I was going to be a winner that night.
We still have the fridge, it's in our kitchen as I type this and we still laugh about my prediction when the subject comes up.
 

Crankyoldgit62

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#20
Years ago, my sons went into a dressing up competition at our local supermarket chain, they went as characters from Noddy and we even built Noddy's car from cardboard. They won and won pens,pencils, drawing books etc... Trouble was they were the only ones to enter!!!! My missus always enters completions online and won trip to Milan and over Christmas, won at least 10 pairs of theatre tickets. Like everyone else, waiting for the big one on the Lottery!!!!
 

GNC

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#22
I entered the local paper's short story writing and picture painting contest in primary school one year and won them both. Trouble was, the second and third prizes were money in the form of gift vouchers, and the first prizes were pennants. So instead of getting money I could buy something nice with, I got not one, but two useless pennants. Thanks.

The lesson is: never try.
 

AnonyJoolz

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#23
I enter a few competitions, had a varied bag of prizes over the past 25 years:

Tickets to Cambridge Folk Festival
A 2kg Lindt chocolate bunny (I had to call my nieces to come and help me with that one!)
A £50 shopping voucher

Never won a mahoosive decent prize yet

The first thing I ever remember winning is a children's painting competition at my local village fete when I was 6. The prize - a box of paints!
 

Lord Lucan

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#25
A friend of mine won a competition. The prize? His mortgage was paid off!
Now how nice would that be?
Years ago when I was a cold, my father worked with a guy who came into their work in a state of shock holding a letter. He asked my father to read it to make sure he wasn't mistaken. He had won first prize in the Opera House lottery which at the time was $60, 000 and a substantial amounts. They paid off their house, bought a new car, took a holiday overseas and bought a genuine remote control television, which thrilled me enormously.
 
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