The question was borne out of a conversation this summer at the Boston conference: How do we better recognize beat writers for outstanding work in the Associated Press Sports Editors contest?
After hearing many perspectives and proposals and having extensive dialogue on the subject, I am proud to announce that a beat writing category will be added to the 2011 APSE writing contest.
The description of the category:
Collection of articles that shows authoritative, newsy and innovative coverage of a beat. For judging purposes, each entry should consist of five pieces: at least one breaking news story; one event or game coverage story; one enterprise piece and two wild-card stories from any of the aforementioned categories (or other stories related to the beat). Entries should include a cover letter with a synopsis of how the combined submissions demonstrate excellence on the beat. The cover letter should note metrics that show authority and audience engagement on the beat (such as blog, chat or message board traffic.) Each paper or website will be allowed two entries in the beat writer category.
In order to add the beat writing category, we had to give something up. The game story category will be dropped in 2011. Game stories will remain represented in the contest as part of the beat writing category.
Special thanks to Mike James of the Los Angeles Times, Josh Barnett of the Philadelphia Daily News and Ron Fritz of the Baltimore Sun as well as the executive committee for their input on this exciting change to the contest.
We eagerly look forward to judging the new category and the others in February in Orlando.