One author challenges
or invites another to a writing duel of a specified duration (the
default is three hours). The two authors select a mutually acceptable
referee who arranges the match.
The referee may
announce any house rules and set forth judging criteria.
Prior to the
duel, each duellist sends the referee three Challenge Words. The referee
supplies a further three Challenge Words for a total of nine. The
three words contributed by each participant words may be unrelated
or may form a phrase.
The referee may
start the contestants simultaneously or at different times according
to the convenience of the three participants. It is necessary only
that an author does not have access to the nine challenge words before
starting the duel and that the referee can establish, by reference
to e-mail time-stamps, that the agreed duration was not exceeded.
At each writer's
appointed start time, the referee sends an e-mail to that writer containing
the nine Challenge Words. The time-stamp of this e-mail is that writer’s
must each compose a piece that makes reference to all nine Challenge
Words. The words can be used directly in the text of the story or
the story may contain concepts defined by one or more words.
For example, if the challenge is "husband catches wife",
a story could simply contain each of the words "husband",
"catches", and "wife" somewhere in the text, or
could include a scene where a husband catches a wife, without necessarily
using any of the challenge words.
Failure to incorporate all nine challenge words meaningfully in the
story may result in a forfeit, or loss of honour, at the referee’s
e-mail a copy of their story to the referee before the expiry of the
agreed duration of the duel. the time-stamp of the submitting e-mail
shall be the time of the submission.
The referee declares
a winner, based on the referee’s own subjective opinion of the stories
and posts both stories as one post to ASSM. No appeals. Entertain
- Mat Twassel requested: "Would you consider putting the required
words at the end of the post instead of the beginning? For me, they
get in the way at the beginning. If they're at the end and someone wants
to know them in advance they can easily skip to the end to find them.