As the year winds down, Allvoices extends a big "thank you" to everyone who participated in the third week of Allvoices' "2011 Memories, 2012 Dreams" contest that runs through Saturday, Dec. 31. You can still submit until then, so get writing!
Our winner for the third week is San Francisco Bay Area writer T-Lon, who joined the site on Christmas Eve 2011. In There's still hope: How the economic troubles of 2011 can inspire us in 2012, T-Lon looks at how real people and grassroots organizations in the United States are responding to economic woes in a combined attempt to find solutions to the problems resulting from the weak economy. T-Lon manages to find rays of hope in the very signs that may cause us to despair.
The following five reports, in chronological order, finished as runners-up:
Sometimes the forced cheeriness of the season can get decidedly disturbing, and Christmas music doesn't make everyone warm and fuzzy inside. Allvoices writer loriannpen of New York City, a member of the site since Aug. 15, 2009, shares her feelings on the matter.
Winning at least 270 electoral votes is the key to winning the White House, and in this well-researched piece, Allvoices anchor itobin53 of Tampa explains why she believes the electoral advantage lies with President Obama in 2012.
Countdown to 2012 Apocalypse scenario: Are you a believer? by Veronica Roberts, Dec. 23, 2011
Week Two winner Veronica Roberts of New York City, an Allvoices anchor and site contributor since May 24, 2010, delivers another intriguing report with her look at some of the theories about Mayan calendar and what it might mean for the coming year.
In addition to her report on Christmas music, loriannpen also contributed this insightful piece on the Tea Party's dissatisfaction with House Speaker John Boehner (R) of Ohio and where it might lead in 2012.
San Francisco scientist Bea Shaylee-Sayers, Allvoices anchor and a member of the site since Jan. 25, 2011, takes a look at some of the scientific findings that didn't exactly jump out on Page One of the world's newspapers.
The contest continues through the end of December. A $50 prize will be awarded to each weekly winner, and a grand prize winner will receive an iPad 2. Also, a $50 prize for the best headline of the month will be awarded, so keep that in mind when you submit. To learn more about writing good headlines, see this report by Allvoices anchor Punditty; all stories submitted throughout the course of the contest will be eligible for the headline awards.
The next and final deadline is at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time on Saturday, Dec. 31.
Happy writing, and Happy New Year!