Start Wars and Write Better


Yes, the title is intended to make you blink twice. I wrote it that way on purpose. How can wars be good for writing? When they are “Word Wars”.

So, what exactly is a Word War?
A Word War is essentially a no pressure contest between two or more individuals, all writers for obvious reasons, who decide on a set amount of time, stop everything, and write. Technically speaking, the person who has the most words at the end wins, but really, if you write 100 words and your partner writes 1,000, it doesn’t really matter at all. Why? Because you wrote something!
Sessions can be 5, 10, 15, 20, even 30 minutes. If you’re brave you’ll go for an hour, but I recommend doing two 20 minute sessions with a 5-10 minute break in the middle.

How are Word Wars helpful?
Simple, they actually make you write. The object of a Word War isn’t to make you write something that is superb and amazing, it’s to get you writing in the first place. Forcing yourself to just write something with a surefire deadline truly can aid in sparking creativity. You might find yourself suddenly drawn into a new story. In that case, you just ask your fellow Word Warrior if you can sit back and write for a bit, or go for another 20 minute round and see if the creativity continues to flow.

Most likely you won’t churn out anything Nobel winning, but again, that isn’t the object of the game. If it was, well it probably wouldn’t be all that fun.

So, go start a war!

About the Author:

Shaun Duke is an aspiring writer, a reviewer, and an academic. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Digital Rhetoric and Writing at Bemidji State University. He received his PhD in English from the University of Florida and studies science fiction, postcolonialism, digital fan cultures, and digital rhetoric.

2 thoughts on “Start Wars and Write Better

  1. Well, you are more than free to bug me on any IM program if you need a late night writing session :P. I’ve been hankering for some more word war writing for a while. I wrote 1500 words the last time! That’s crazy for me! 40 minutes of writing to get that. Usually it takes me a couple hours :S. And I think they were decent words…hehe.

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