The Biblio Files  

  our bookish life  

The Biblio Files

The Biblio Files
Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.
January 01
We (Steve and Helen) irresponsibly gave up our promising careers in aviation and bookselling over ten years ago. Now books seem to have taken over our lives. We frequent libraries, bookstores, and thrift shops in search of interesting books. We buy/swap/sell, but mainly, we read. We both wear glasses and have been mistaken for librarians.


Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 23, 2008 11:31PM

Win Fabulous Prizes ($250,000) for Your Writing

Rate: 18 Flag

  bag o' bucks

Attention all you Open Salon writers. You've proven your ability to write posts that punch our buttons. You know how to whip up a post that gets us seething, laughing, crying, or just leaves us speechless.


Now you have a chance to make some money with your talent. No, this isn't about Tippem (how's that working out, by the way?). This is a site called, which awards monthly prizes for non-fiction essays. October is their first official month after being in beta testing since June. So far, they've awarded dozens of $1,000 prizes, several $4,000 prizes, and one $20,000 prize.


Every month, $1,000 prizes are awarded in each of 20 categories, such as On the Job, Friends and Family, and Oddball Events. Another monthly prize of $4,000 is awarded to the highest rated story overall. And all the prize winners are entered into the contest for a Grand Prize of $250,000 to be awarded on January 1, 2009.


To enter, you become a member of the FieldReport. You read, rate, and review other members' entries. When you've rated at least five essays, you are eligible to submit an entry of your own. It's read, rated, and reviewed by other members, and the top rated entries win the prizes.


In the beta test, 54-year-old postal worker Murr (short for “Mary”) Brewster from Oregon won the top prize of $20,000 with an essay about a woman she encountered on her postal route.


When FieldReport started, the main problem was that people thought it was a scam. When the prize money was actually awarded, that helped to convince some people. And learning the story behind the founding of FieldReport lay some suspicions to rest. The fact that there is no entry fee makes it easy to take a chance and submit an entry. And the potential $250,000 grand prize payout makes it hard to ignore.


Entries must be no longer than 2000 words, so keep it short. Read some of the winning entries to see what makes a highly-rated essay. As long as you keep rating other entries, you can enter as often as you like. Your entry may not have been published except on a personal blog or in a print publication of fewer than 1,000. You must retain the copyright. I am not sure if that means you can use material you've already posted on Open Salon or not. Probably not. Although you do retain copyright, does your Open Salon blog qualify as a personal blog?


The next prize award date is November 1, so get cracking! I've read some of the winning entries on FieldReport and they're good, but Open Salon bloggers are better. And if you win, don't forget where you heard about FieldReport. That Tip button isn't there just for decoration.



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Type your comment below:
Wow. Tip of the day. Er, I mean, excellent heads-up. Thanks, Biblio!
Don't everybody rush over there at once, the boat might tump over...

Good on yas, Los Biblios!
Thanks for this. I'm pulling for a winner from OS. Wouldn't that be cool! (You had me at "know how to whip up a post.")
Biblio, thanks for posting this! I would never have heard about it otherwise.
Funny line; "No, this isn't about Tippem (how's that working out, by the way?)"

Thanks, I'm gullible and game. Sounds interesting.
WOW! I could make a fortune as OddBall!
Game over. If Freaky Troll is entering, no one else stands a chance.
Thanks for the info! It's great to see something without an entry fee for once!
Thank you Biblio. Nice to know and well-explained. I like this community... fun to help each other out.
I want your lives! What fun to dedicate your time to reading and exploring books....I am so jealous...
Damn, is that the sound of a stampede I hear of writers rushing from OS to Field Report? More seriously, Biblio, what's their business model? Still sounds a bit fishy to this dog......

You aren't alone in your skepticism, Dawg. According to this article in the UK Telegraph, "Field Report is a business. Its money comes from investors, and it hopes eventually to become a money-making enterprise through advertising, publishing and selling merchandise." It's also explained in a SF Chronicle article you can find with the "people thought it was a scam" link in my post.

Maybe it's true, maybe it isn't. I can't vouch for the site. You takes your chances, but what have you got to lose?
Geez, I dunno. I mean...what do I know? Were it not for spellckeck I'd have been sent back to Remedial Blog w/ a #2 pencil and a composition notebook, but... being here reminds me of the Packers under Lombardi or the Vikings under Grant (I'm from Minnesota but I give 'em equal billing, today), fellas who played out of love of the game, and for the love and respect of their team mates. They were paid peanuts, but they'll never be forgotten.
Yep, definitely a better incentive than tippem ;) Personally, I wish they would get rid of that "Tip!" button. It just doesn't make sense here on OS.

Thanks, biblios!
Here's my latest entry into the contest: