Organising How I Enter Challenges and Submissions – plus a challenge for you!

The Challenge is now CLOSED! Thanks to everyone who entered. The winner will be announced on Thursday 5th July!
I like to enter scrapbooking challenges, and occasionally submit layouts or cards to magazine calls for submissions, or submitting an application to be on a design team. It’s a nice way to share my work with more people that may not normally see it, and even if I don’t get accepted for the magazines or design teams, I still get a sense of satisfaction from submitting instead of just reading about it – at least I’m trying, right?!
The only trouble is there are so many challenge sites that I love, and not as many, but still quite a few, ways to submit to magazines and apply for design teams. I’ve had to get organised about how I enter them, so I don’t feel overwhelmed!

These are some of the layouts I’ve submitted to challenges so far this year… ‘Adorable Birthday Girl’ was for a sketch challenge at the Sketchbook365 blog, ‘Every Excursion’ was for a National Scrapbooking Day challenge at Big Picture Classes, ‘Baby Boy’ was based on a challenge at, and ‘My Best Friend’s Wedding’ was based on this colour challenge at the Crate Paper blog.

To organise the way I enter challenges and submissions I’ve had to do two things: 
  1. Limit the amount that I enter 
  2. Keep track of what deadlines are approaching
To limit the amount I enter, I decided that I should only submit to a maximum of two challenges, and one design team or magazine submission per month (on top of my regular design team work for SJ Crafts, and writing for the Popular Crafts magazine). Any more than that isn’t practical for me. If I ever find that I have some spare time I could always enter more, but limiting myself at the start of the month means I don’t feel pressured to enter every interesting looking thing that pops up! 
I also try to alternate which sites I’m entering at – one month I’ll enter a challenge at the Crate Paper blog, and enter a submission to the Scrap 365 magazine; the next month I’ll enter a challenge at the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog, and submit to a design team call that I’ve spotted at the Design Team Calls website.
And to keep track of what deadlines are approaching, I use this Day-A-Page diary, that I picked up cheaply in the supermarket:

I jot down all the details on the deadline date, so when I have some time to enter something I can flick forwards to see what is coming up. I even inlude a little sketch if it’s a sketch challenge. It means I don’t have to keep checking the internet (and therfore get distracted by social media!) every time I think I’d like to make something to submit.
Do you submit to magazines or design team calls? How about entering challenges?
Here’s your chance to do the latter – I challenge you to enter a challenge! 
At some point between now and Monday night at 11.59pm GMT, you need to enter an online challenge, one that requires you to either blog about it or post it to an online gallery. Then come back here and link it below. One randomly chosen participant (if I have any!) will be chosen to win this Bazzill Basics Paper ‘Avalon’ kit:
Including a 12×12″ collection pack of papers, a set of pretty buttons, and some brad jackets.
Do you need to find a challenge to enter? Here’s some links to current challenges:
There’s a few ideas to get you started, but you can enter any online challenge that you like. Do you have a favourite challenge site? 
Just make sure that when you’ve entered the challenge at the host site, you come back and link it here too.
But hurry, you need to enter by 11.59pm GMT on Monday 2nd July! {NOW CLOSED}
And don’t forget, that commenting on this post, or any post from this weekend, will enter you into the Grand Giveaway {NOW CLOSED} – but only if you’ve registered your interest in winning it here.
I’ll see you again in an hour’s time! x
  • I love online challenges – deadlines bring out the best in me! And I’d love to get some of those winners’ blinkies to embellish my blog! But I know what you mean about taking on too many. The deadline for this week’s Summer of Color challenge at Twinkle Twinkle is tomorrow I think, so maybe I’d better get my skates on…the Avalon Kit looks fab so I’d love to be in with a chance 🙂

    June 30, 2012 at 11:15 am
  • I often enter online challenges, but I rarely submit my work anymore. I only enter at sites in my reader, so that way I can tell if I’ve won or not. Will have to see if I can find a challenge to submit something I have with me on vacation.Rinda

    June 30, 2012 at 11:36 am
  • Counterfeit Kit Challenge

    This is my favorite post so far! Such great ideas!Bethany

    June 30, 2012 at 11:48 am
  • I am going to give it my best shot! I have so much difficulty following this one. Something ALWAYS gets in the way of me entering challenges… like this weekend, my husband is in town… and I am not sure if I will get time to enter something… but I will try my best! I really need to start planning ahead, and write things down!! 🙂 Thanks for your tips!cherie.goyer at gmail.com

    June 30, 2012 at 11:52 am
  • I’m always entering on line challenges- and do something similar to use with using a notebook to keep track! I hope to have time to enter a challenge in for your prize!

    June 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm
  • I know I won’t be able to do a challenge. It’s gonna take all my time just catching up on your posts this weekend. I’m not complaining, just would rather do this. It makes me feel connected to you and the other commenters.

    June 30, 2012 at 3:03 pm
  • I really need to start writing down deadlines in my planner! I would like to enter more challenges and start submitting things to be published but it’s hard to stay on top of sometimes!

    June 30, 2012 at 4:48 pm
  • Love your layouts especially your Baby Boy one! I never have time to enter challenges anymore and don’t try out for design teams as I am a slow scrapper so one is enough for me! I do use a diary to keep track of my deadlines though 🙂

    June 30, 2012 at 5:23 pm
  • I often look at challenges but I rarely enter them and when I do I usually forget which ones I did lol!! I really should use a diary!

    June 30, 2012 at 6:58 pm
  • ooooo, great tip about using a diary 🙂 I put things like that in a big graph journal but they get a bit lost in that :sNow, off to find a challenge I can do when I get home from work tomorrow 🙂

    June 30, 2012 at 8:22 pm
  • Oh, I just finished a challenge layout today that uses another of Bazzill Basics collections sets. I would love to get my hands on more of their paper – I’m glad to see that they are not just cardstock anymore! Thanks for the challenge challenge.

    June 30, 2012 at 9:14 pm
  • I do enjoy participating in challenges and I have actually just created a page for the Scrap 365 sketch challenge (unfortunately I can’t share it yet) – I keep a bookmark folder filled with link to challenge blogs 🙂

    June 30, 2012 at 9:37 pm
  • I have never entered a challenge-so now I may have to take the leap and go for it!

    July 1, 2012 at 3:21 am
  • I actually entered two yesterday . . . I don’t know that I’ll get another done by the deadline!

    July 1, 2012 at 4:14 am
  • Gorgeous layouts-and I love to enter sketch challenges, myself!

    July 1, 2012 at 1:32 pm
  • Always on the look out for new challenges to keep my mojo going, but definitely a little overwhelmed by the idea of entering so many. Love that you have a separate calendar to track your creative submissions though – that’s an awesome way of motivating yourself!

    July 1, 2012 at 3:05 pm
  • I like a lot enter to challenges, sometimes when I have work to do I have to pass… I do write the dead lines into a journal I do not like to fail in an commitment voluntarily acquiredSo now I have to say that I don’t understand what we have to do…Post about your event? or enter into a challenge listed, maybe it’s a silly question, but its hard for me, thanks and kissessra_de_romero(at)

    July 1, 2012 at 3:06 pm
  • I really enjoy entering challenges….especially sketch challenges….but apart from the sketch ones….I tend to find ones that fit with what I’ve made rather than the other way round!!

    July 1, 2012 at 10:20 pm
  • I’d never thought of intentionally setting a limit on how many challenges I enter. What a good idea – that’ll definitely reduce the guilt/frustration at not being able to enter as many as I’d like!

    July 1, 2012 at 11:03 pm
  • I started my blog so that I could enter challenges – but that got me READING blogs more and now my challenge entering time is under threat!!!I’ve added my link up top (but actually missed the deadline to upload to ATDML *sigh* I did still link it up there but feel free to discount me from the draw)

    July 1, 2012 at 11:10 pm
  • I love challenges – but stopped entering (and blogging!) a few months back so that I had more time for other things including more scrapping. I love them but felt that I had to be more focused to get the scrapping done that I wanted – you seem more organised though!

    July 2, 2012 at 1:03 pm
  • Pants! I wasn’t organised enough to see this in time! 😉

    July 2, 2012 at 10:30 pm

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