Site Spotlight Spotlight
Also by moocowalex
An exciting announcement was just broadcast over all of Neopia recently, which made many Neopians, including myself, jump for joy! The Site Spotlight, which had been discontinued only one month prior to its ten year anniversary, was making a triumphant comeback and publishing a new spotlight on the 11th day of the Month of Swimming. This apparent "lack of interest" in the Site Spotlight has not been seen; there have been ripples of excitement all across Neopia at its reinstatement. Therefore, we believe that the Site Spotlight should have its very own spotlight here... the Site Spotlight Spotlight!
But first, for those of you who have joined Neopia since the hiatus of the Site Spotlight, a brief overview of what it really is. Ever since Year 2 in the Month of Gathering, the Site Spotlight has rewarded a user weekly for the hard work that they have spent maintaining their petpage. Upon inspecting the submission page, you can see that there are a wide variety of topics that are covered, including: Neopets, petpets, faeries, villains, games, Neopian holidays, paint brush colors, the Battledome, Neopian Worlds, and the all-inclusive miscellaneous category for anything and everything that can't quite be captured in the above topics. You can literally find an abundance of useful and/or hilarious information simply by flipping through the various winners of the Site Spotlight over the years. Talk about a way to spend a lazy afternoon!
To understand how far the Site Spotlight has come over the years, one must first consider its origins. The first Site Spotlight began on September 9, 2000, (Year 2, Month of Gathering), and has been showcasing users' petpages nearly every week ever since. The very first spotlight featured something as simple as an HTML guide, something that can be useful to anyone still today hoping to one day win this elusive spotlight. Ever since then, themes have varied, coming up to the very last Site Spotlight awarded, featuring the customization of pets – a topic that was unheard of back when the Site Spotlight originated, showing how the petpage topics have evolved over the years.
Much to the dismay of Neopians all around Neopia, the Site Spotlight was retired on August 12, 2010 (Year 12, Month of Hiding)... until now! And now is your shot to have your week of fame with your amazing petpage!
If you're looking to win the Site Spotlight, adhere to the following tips! They may make the difference between you getting in or being edged out by that slightly superior competitor.
1. First off, make sure you cover all aspects of the topic you are covering. A petpage is most useful if it covers every angle of a topic. For example, if you are writing about Kaus, you would want to include maybe where they originated, their ancestral history, the different colors they can be painted, the famous Kaus around Neopia, and even the games, items, and pictures that Kaus are featured in! Unlike other contests, the Site Spotlight has no word limit, so there's no stopping you from going all out. Write, draw, create until your heart's content!
2. Furthermore, make sure your information is up to date. A petpage that includes "useful" but inaccurate information will surely not be selected for such a prestigious award. Check your facts, and have your kind neofriends lend you a hand as well, if necessary.
3. Make sure your page is pertinent to other users' interests. If you create a petpage about something that is extremely obscure and is of no use to anyone at all, no matter how detailed and well thought out it is, it probably does not stand a good chance of winning. Be unique, but stick to your strengths and make it common enough for other users to comprehend what it is you're displaying.
4. Look through past spotlight winners. Since the Site Spotlight has been gone for nearly two years, there will likely be fierce competition for a good while; everyone will want to get in immediately now that it's back. You will need to do lots of research in order to win! Take notes of the pages that won, and look at your page and try to figure out what separates the winners from you and your petpage. Sometimes there won't be anything noticeable when you first view a page, but there may be some things even as small as aesthetic details that make the biggest difference.
5. Even a site that is extremely in-depth and chock full of useful information will pale in comparison to a slightly less complete one that has a better layout and graphics. Although looks aren't everything, they can certainly help! And as a side note, stay away from the premade graphics. The Site Spotlight should be YOUR original work, not the work of the other many talented artists that can be found across Neopia.
6. If your petpage has a theme that goes along with a certain Neopian Holiday, Pet Day, or annual event, you should definitely play the odds and enter. TNT loves spotlight winners that have a theme that ties in with current events around Neopia. Just make sure to submit it a couple weeks before the actual event date, so that TNT has the opportunity to see your dazzling entry before it's too late!
7. Have fun with your petpage, and never give up! If you are truly passionate about what your petpage is about, it will be reflected in the quality of your work. And even if you fail once, never give up! Many a good petpage were first rejected before they were truly appreciated.
Well, that's about it, folks! Hopefully you have learned more about the Site Spotlight and are now as enthused as I am about its return. Employ these tips and create the amazing pages that live up to their full potential – I certainly look forward to seeing them all in my personal favorite spotlight in all of Neopia. Now... I better run off, fine-tune and enter my page before this article is published and the competition increases tenfold... ah! Good luck to everybody, and congratulations to the Site Spotlight in its reestablishment!