With one-and-a-half months to cookie competition time, I took to social media today – live (!) – to answer all of your lingering competition questions, and to hopefully nudge a few more of you off the fence. Couldn’t make the live? Afraid you missed out on all of my hot competition tips? Quash that fear, because I’m about to tell you all about that live – and even replay it here!

As I mentioned at least a few times during today’s Q&A, competing isn’t really about winning or losing (though our $15,650 prize package IS pretty awesome ). It’s about taking advantage of a structured format to challenge yourself, as anonymously as you’d like, to try things you wouldn’t ordinarily attempt in day-to-day life. It’s also an opportunity to get world-class feedback from decorators whose sole goal is to help you advance your skills. Rest assured, you can wipe away any trepidation or concerns about registering; learning and growth are the only real outcomes of my competition!

If you’re already preparing an entry or just planning yours, now’s the time to listen to today’s recording (below). In it, I answer many very good questions while providing more insight into the judging process, including what our judges most (and least) like to see in entries.

If after watching this video, you still find yourself wondering about the competition rules or some other aspect of competing, please don’t hesitate to leave your question(s) below in the comments, or to email me at sweetlife@juliausher.com. And, remember, for all of the written competition rules (which you should read before you start work), competition registration, and more, see the key competition links below.

Best of luck to all entrants, and I hope to see scads of you on March 31 at That Takes the Cake (TTTC) Show in Austin, Texas, where my competition is hosted this year!