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Copy & Paste or PDF Entry? Weird Formatting, Advice, and Tips

Updated: Sep 23, 2019

Hey guys,

If you've encountered any formatting issues, or are struggling to get your work into the right format, this is how to do it.

Upload PDF

If you're going with the PDF upload option, then it's going to allow you to preserve all your formatting perfectly. PDF stands for Portable Document Format, and is built for preserving documents across platforms. There are two options to get your Word document, Google Docs, Pages, or Libre/Open Office document into the right format.

Save As/Export

When your file is ready to be submitted, click File, and then find the Save As/Export option, and select PDF as the output format. Save it as something memorable either in your documents or to your desktop, and then let the program do the rest. Then, when you're ready to upload it to the system, just locate it from where you saved it and you're good to go.

But I don't have a Save As/Export option?

If you can't find either of those options, don't despair, because there's another really easy way to get hold of a PDF version of your Word document. Head to an online PDF tool website -- we love for their solid user interface and variety of output options -- and select the Word to PDF option. Then upload your Word file, click convert, download the PDF it spits out. And then you can upload during submission. Simple, right?

Copy and Paste

Copying and pasting is another option we allow, which is great for drafting and editing a piece in our text editor before you submit. However, if you copy into our editor from Word, Pages, or another program, you may find that some of the formatting -- in particular line breaks and spacing. This is because of the way that those programs present your work in their display, and luckily there's an easy fix.

When you reach the submission editor, click on the box and hit the space bar to make sure it's activated, and then press 'Control + Shift + V' ('Command + Shift V' on Mac) all together to paste without formatting. Then, if you need to add any italics in, you can go back through and do so using the editor tools. Pasting without formatting like this is the best way to get your work to us looking correct.

Thanks for reading this formatting guide, and if you need any more help, just email us at

Good luck with the competition!


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