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The Never To Be Underestimated Tie Breaker

This perhaps is the most important section of this or any manual or course on the subject of achieving a regular place on the winners lists of the very many competitions sponsored today. Please read this section with care, never under-estimate the importance of the tie breaker - never throw in the very first ideas that spring to mind - never decry the work of others. Here is where your real chance of obtaining truly magnificent prizes presents itself. Read on!

A tie breaker by its very definition, is a technique designed to break a tie between candidates as yet of equal standing. In the order-of-merit exercise, with odds so heavily stacked against acquiring a 'correct' line, the tie breaker stage might not even come into play, it might not even be set in the first place but reserved as a secondary measure in the unlikely event more than one entrant presents a line coinciding with that determined by the judges.

Rhyme:

As we've already decided, accounts for the great majority of winning lines, but given today's higher entry levels, the simple rhyme has been somewhat stripped of its magnetic powers. Some other device is therefore incorporated by which to make the rhyme stand out from the crowd. We find therefore such unforgettable offering as:

SPLENDID BLENDED (Brevity and Rhyme)

MORE PICK UP PER CUP (Play on Words and Rhyme)

NIGHT AND DAY,RELIANT'S WAY (Opposites and Rhyme)

EVE IT, TRY IT, BUY IT! (Rhyming Triple)

MY BEST PROTECTION FOR BAKING PERFECTION IS OCCIDENT FLOUR (Internal Rhyme)

Words Within A Word:

The following example is somewhat self-explanatory for this technique, which though often difficult to master, can produce some of the most memorable of tie breakers.

TAKES THE B OUT OF BEATING AND GIVES DELICIOUS EATING

When the sentence requiring completion is one for which no gimmick, joke or light-hearted approach will fit the bill, then the SERIOUS completion is one worth considering:

DRIVERS DO BE CAREFUL, LET MY CHILD COME HOME ALIVE

Anther to produce highly memorable results, but one much easier to accomplish, is that technique which results from utilising OPPOSITES OR CONTRASTS:

ALWAYS ONE STEP AHEAD BUT A PRICE RISE BEHIND

Play On Words And Puns:

Though essentially different in definition, I have grouped together the play on words and pun, since both result primarily from playing around with words, phrases, clichés, proverbs and such, until the desired effect is achieved. It is worth noting however, that the pun usually has a humorous end result, whilst the play on words may or may not possess a more serious element:

NO RUST FOR THE WARY

If two rhyming components don't satisfy, then try your hand at THE TRIPLE, which as the name implies has three components, sometimes rhyming, sometimes not.

GRANDPA LOVED THEM, SO DID DAD, NOW THEY'RE FAVOURITES WITH THE LAD

Repitition:

This is the technique by which to make your feelings knows:

BALANCED MEALS ON BALANCED BUDGETS

Reversal:

Another interesting device is that of REVERSAL, an eye-catching technique

that can result in an extremely memorable tie breaker:

EXACTLY RIGHT TO WRITE EXACTLY

Inclusion Of Product, Store, Person's Name, etc:

This is most definitely to win favour with the judges, particularly those actually representing the company promoting the competition:

ASDA - THE FOUR LETTER WORD DISCERNING SHOPPERS SWEAR BY

Acrostic:

'Initially' a very good tie breaker type. Where letters forming an appropriate word, for example the firm or product promoted in the competition, are used as the starting letters of the words in the entrant's message:

BISTO IS SUNDAY'S TASTIEST OFFERING (BISTO)

SENTIMENTAL competitors come to the fore when appealing to the judge's sense of 'family' loyalty, whether of the kinship of Company variety:

WHEN TIME IS SHORT IT'S MUM'S FIRST THOUGHT

MADE BY OUR FAMILY FOR YOURS

Brevity of course is one of the most envied of tie breaker characteristics, and often something very difficult to achieve.

Quickies:

These are often both memorable and pleasing to the judges' eyes, and of course if some other technique such as double meaning words or puns is incorporated, the end result becomes even more worthy of big prize status:

JOINT HAPPINESS (Bisto purchased at Morrisons)

Alliteration:

Where some or all of the words in the tie breaker start with the same letter or sound, and again extremely memorable results can be achieved, especially if some other technique is also incorporated:

STUDY THE SECRET OF SLOGANS THAT SELL

Altered Words:

We rely heavily on words which sound alike, though we can also take advantage of 'coined' words, which don't actually exist in true vocabulary. Another eye-catching technique if properly utilised, if over-done it's sure to end up looking awkward and contrived:

WE CAN SIR, CURE CANCER

WRECK-LESS, NOT RECKLESS

Gimmicks, Oddities and Abbreviations:

E-Z WAY TO PREVENT D-K

Rhyming Jingles:

Sing your way to victory. They are a variation of the rhyming technique, possessing both rhythm and balance that tends to make the reader want to sing along:

ETERNAL ROMA BLENDS SO WELL, FOUNTAINS, FUN AND PETER'S BELL

TOPICAL EVENTS AND PEOPLE brought us the brilliant:

SHE MADE HER MARK BEFORE REACHING HER PRIME (Margaret Thatcher)

Homonyms:

Words which though spelt differently still sound the same, were responsible for:

SUPERBLY RIGHT FOR WRITING

Product Personalised:

On the other hand, this appeals to the judges' sense of Company loyalty, suggesting you have only their product in mind:

BORN IN HEREFORD AND RAISED IN GLASSES EVERYWHERE (Cider)

Nursery Rhymes:

For big kids everywhere, they transport us back to a time long gone, by which are evoked memories to stir even the hardest of judges' hearts:

I AM THE WOMAN THAT SWALLOWED THE SPIDER THAT GIGGLED AND GIGGLED AND GIGGLED IN CIDER (Cider)

Songs, Books, TV Topics and Programmes:

We may find ourselves visualising an everyday television 'soap' character, or one from some blockbusting novel, with whom to add colour and usually hilarity to the situation:

I'M NO KRYSTLE IN SUSPENDERS, MORE LIKE PAULINE IN EASTENDERS

Double Meaning Words and Phrases:

They account for such worthy winners as:

B.A. IS A DEGREE ABOVE THE REST

Odd, Long, Different and Coined Words:

These seek to impress the judge here with the quality of the entrant's vocabulary, as with:

SOUPA-CALLOUS-TRAGIC-MYSTIC-EXPERT-ALATROCIOUS

Competiton Theme:

A favourite of many competitions enthusiasts, this is one likely to be in the minds of all our fellow entrants, and so 'first thoughts' must almost always be discarded, as must ideas used in past competitions with a similar theme, for fear of heavy duplication and subsequent disqualification.

Music Theme:

THEY'RE TUNED IN FOR SOUND VALUE

Foreign Flavour:

This is a technique used almost invariably where the theme of the competition or the product itself has a foreign connection:

RIVIERA SHADES MAKE ME LOOK SO CHIC, OOH-LA-LA THEY'RE MAGNIFIQUE

Patriotism:

Some competitions lend themselves well to the inclusion of a little patriotism. Hence we find:

WHAT BRITAIN MAKES BRITAIN MAKES BETTER

Headlines:

These give impact to the entry form as well as to the contents of the newsagent's stands:

EXTRA! EXTRA! EXTRA! NEWS THAT'S HOT! SPAM 'N' PANCAKES HIT THE SPOT

Drum-Beat Rhythm:

This endeared us all to: 'Milk has goota lotta bottle', just effectively sings the praises of other products:

THEY PACKS FRESHA RASHA

One-Worders:

Are eye-catching if only because of what one can find to say in so few letters:

DRAM-ATIC (Whisky)

With that lot from which to draw inspiration, surely those of us suffering the longest of losing spells can start creating worthy winners 'write' away!

 

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