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.


I'm. Geeked.

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 (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.

Happy writing!

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  1. Renée aka Mekhismom

    What a wonderful contest. I can't wait to read the entries and I might just be inspired to enter myself.

  2. Oh, i'm so excited! Can't wait to have time to write this post!

  3. parentingBYdummies

    As tumultuous as my household is I'm not sure I have much to say about peace, but I'll think about it for a bit and get back to you!

  4. This sounds really exciting. I am knee-deep in prepping for a presentation on a 14th century merchant of Prato for a 5:30 p.m. class. My 1-year-old and 6-year-old have a cough and are all sniffly! My hair looks like a kid who's been rolling around under blankets. God knows writing about peace would be a good remedy!

  5. Love.Love.Love this idea! The contest;this particular topic;the guest judge–all dat!

  6. Boni Candelario

    What a great idea. I got a chance to hear you at Blogalicious 09 and was moved to tears by your words. This is a great way to share love.

    Thank you,


  7. Teresha@Marlie and Me

    This is a great idea! Count me in!

  8. I love this!

  9. Can't wait! Love the topic!!

  10. Felicia (aka Mommy B)

    What a FANTASTIC idea! Looking forward to reading and writing as well!

  11. Brilliance! And this is going down every month too?! OK. I got some things I wanna say.

  12. Nothing can faze me;
    Calm and peace suffuse my life,
    Because I have faith.

  13. I'm in. I'm definitely going to win those football tickets.

  14. Fantastic idea. Don't know if I am brave enough to submit anything but I sure look forward to reading those who do.

  15. I am so in this!

  16. Denene! This is great. I am so last minute but I cannot resist the topic – Peace!! I know there is only one day left, can I still participate? Can I post about this for my readers and submit story within the same 24 hours? Also, is the deadline midnight on the 20th?

  17. Joyce The Writer

    This is totally inspiring…and I of course love all the writers you mentioned in the opening paragraph, and you, too! I'm late this month seeing the contest, and of course I'm on deadline, but I hope to participate in next month. In the meantime, I shared via Facebook, Twitter and I'll do a quick post about it on my blog (for genius writers who may be able to knock out something today). Thanks for the encouragement!

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