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Free Fragments

Free Fragments: January 2012

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

DASH Literary Journal

Spring Semester has started and in addition to working on my project for my Masters degree, I am an executive editor for our school's literary journal, DASH. I encourage all you writers to submit to DASH, we accept poetry, fiction, art, criticism, non-fiction and we are also interested in mixed media works (we call these hybrid). We blind-read all submissions, so anyone could be accepted, of any age, from any place, etc.

Be friends with us on Facebook!
Tweet with us on Twitter!
Submit work at our website!

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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Giveaway tips and tricks

Some of my real life friends and coworkers have been interested in how I win free stuff online. While I could be selfish and say "Do what I did and spend hours online looking this stuff up!", it really wouldn't be very helpful. And for those who are serious about "sweeping", they will be spending hours researching anyway, so I may as well give a few pointers.

And you will spend hours doing it. I spend at least an hour everyday, going through my dailies, finding new sweeps, etc. This hobby does take time. And patience. Results are not immediate. Results are not guaranteed. I went 3 weeks without a win before I won a shopbop giftcard the other day. It is very much a numbers game, enter more and you're more likely to win something. Enter giveaways with less entries (or less exposure/hits) and you're more likely to win. It takes more time to find the more obscure giveaways! Or perhaps just a bit of organization...

1. Set up a Routine
Set up an alternate email account, a google account, a pinterest, a bloglovin', a stumble, and a twitter account. These are the most common ways you may be asked to follow someone to gain an entry into the giveaway.
Some giveaways will ask to fill out a form, others will ask you to leave a comment for each entry, and many now use a widget called rafflecopter to keep track of entries (it uses your facebook account to remember your entries). I have won giveaways that use each of these different methods and I don't see much difference, except that usually forms are on the more popular websites (such as magazines) and you may have less of a chance of winning because there's no way to tell how many people have entered.
Set up a series of bookmark folders or a notepad document to keep track of your entries. Note if the giveaway sponsor will email you if you won, or if you need to check back to see if you won. I bookmark the pages I need to return to later with the date the winners will be posted.

2. Use Add-ons
The most important add-on I use is Roboform. With a click of a button (and a few loading seconds if the particular site isn't already saved) all of my information is filled out onto the form. This saves a lot of time!

3. Double-Check All Information
Don't hit that submit button before checking to make sure your information is entered correctly, and that you have fulfilled all requirements for the entry.

4. Frequent Different Listings
Many blogs have listings of giveaways because sometimes the giveaway will offer extra entries for sharing and posting about that giveaway. Most giveaways posted on freefragments falls under that category. this site is great. It has an extensive and active forum where sweepers can learn more about sweeping from the pros, tips and tricks, even free samples and survey opportunities. I use this site to keep track of many of my dailies (after you sign up, click the red button next to the sweep to add it to your MySweeps).
Esty Giveaways: This is a nice listing of esty (handmade or vintage) giveaways. They list giveaways by add date in the main posting section, but also by the ending date in the left-hand column.
The Giveaway Lifestyle: Sarah is awesome. Everyday without fail she posts the ending-soon list of giveaways she's entered. Many of these are nail polish or other beauty products. She's also very nice!
Also: check your favorite brands or magazines frequently for giveaways or promotions. Do a quick search on facebook, google or twitter using your favorite brandnames +giveaway or contest. I frequently search for Sephora, Stila, Tarte, OPI, Shabby Apple, Anthropologie, Blowfish, and Urban Decay because 1. they are popular, 2. they constantly host or have blogs host giveaways and 3. I love their products!

Which brings me to my last point: Don't waste your time on trying to win something you won't enjoy. It may be tempting to enter that baby book giveaway because there's only 20 entries, but it's useless unless you or someone you know can use the product. So go for stuff you always wanted but can't usually afford and have fun!

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Julep Maven Sneak Peak Box

According to Julep, my style is Boho Glam. What's yours?

Enter to win an intro box from Julep at Mommy Living the Life of Riley! Ends 1/19.


Friday, January 6, 2012

Style and Soul Giveaway

Ending today, get your entries in! She's giving away two huge prize packs; I am especially excited about the tops with the peter pan collars and all of the beauty products! Enter here.