When in the course of Holiday Restraint, an intelligent contestant brought forth this question: shall its and it count as a repetition? His question spawned the following rules:

On the subject of possessive pronouns: If words have separate entries in the dictionary, they are not considered repetitions. Example: you, your, yours, and yourself are considered different words. So are it and its; she, her, and hers; just like he, him, and his.

Possessives of previously used proper nouns are considered a repetition. Example: Tom prevents the later use of Tom’s.

Contractions shall be counted as two different words. Example: you’re, prevents the later use of you and and are; it’s prevents the later use of it and is. And vise versa, is prevents using it’s later.

Conjugations of previously used verbs are not allowed. Example: give prevents the later use of giving. Exception: is, was, are, am.

Plurals of previously used nouns are not allowed. Example: star prevents the later use of stars.

Homonyms are begrudgingly allowed.

If these rule horribly change the work of those who have already submitted, you may revise your entry by replying to your original email.

When in doubt, remember the spirit of the contest, which is one of creativity, not loopholes. Exception: using loopholes creatively.

For more contest details, such as judging, prizes, and deadlines, click here.

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