Tuesday, January 03, 2006

New Year - New Contest

2005 was a great year for blogs in general and a banner year for milblogs. So many people are seeking and finding these wonderful sources of news from the front (and rear and sides) that even the legacy media had to acknowledge their existence. Articles like those in Newsday in Giving the Ultimate View from the Inside, the David Ignatius piece in WaPo Slogging and Blogging Through Iraq, and the BBC interview of several great milbloggers in Blogs Offer Taste of War in Iraq by Kevin Anderson - the audiostream of which can be found here.

One of the best things to happen to milblogs was the brain child of "problem child" Jean-Paul Borda. An OEF Vet who authored the hilarious (but now defunct) The National Guard Experience, JP set out to catalog every single milblog in existence and offer the public one place to find them all. The result: Milblogging.com!

To pimp generate interest in the new site, JP created a contest to determine which milblogs were the most popular. The first annual Milbloggies concluded Dec. 31st with the Best Ofs earning schweet new banners to display and bragging rights for the coming year. All of the finalists are worth a visit or two (or more) and OORAH! Capt B won for best Marine blog! Although I never expected to make a showing, I did receive some much appreciated votes (thanks Sis!)

A new year, a new contest.

Sgt. Trevor Snyder of The Will to Exist is one of my favorite people from whom to pluck quotes. He's always got something interesting to say, and since his arrival in Iraq he's expanded his blog to include a lot more pics, video, guest bloggers and even a discussion board.

The latest edition (actually, a few weeks old - I know, I'm late) is an Essay Contest - Why am I here?

The Will to Exist is sponsoring an essay contest open to soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines serving with Multi-National Force Iraq (anywhere in the country of Iraq). If you left MNF-I within the last year, or have orders to MNF-I, or are currently serving here, you’re eligible to enter the contest.

In 500-1000 words, explain why you are in Iraq.

... The goal of this essay contest is to promote the American public’s awareness of the situation in Iraq and to help spread a better understanding of what it is like to be an American serviceperson serving in theater.

Plus, the winner gets his/her essay published all over the place and $250! The deadline for entries is February 16, 2006 with the winner to be announced March 1st.

If you or someone you know fits the qualifications, please enter this contest! I'm hoping Trevor will publish all the entries 'cause I know I'd like to read them.