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The Writer's Games

Not your ordinary writing competition.

The Writer's Games is an annual writing competition with a global reach. For six consecutive weeks, registered participants create short stories that meet the challenges (Events) announced for the week. Each Event lasts 72 hours and no one knows what that week's challenge might be until the clock starts. While the first Event is for practice, winners of the following five Events are published in the Writer's Games anthology. Competition is fierce (but friendly!).

Our team of judges (college interns and special guests) score each entry on a ten-point scale based on the story's expression of the Event's Core Concepts. Judges create private, personalized feedback for every entry regardless of placement so registered participants are encouraged to create stories for all of the Events. The Writer's Games makes it easy to try new genres and quickly improve your writing in just six weeks. 


The Writer's Games will return for a single portion in 2022. Among the changes, we'll have registration and Mock Events in May and Games Events starting June 10. Stay tuned here or opt IN for Writer's Games updates

Looking for other great writing contest options? Check out this blog post by Kindlepreneur!

Each portion of The Writer's Games requires an average of 35 people and around 5,500 hours of volunteer labor. Find out what goes into the production of one portion of The Writer's Games here


The Writer's Games is a global competition so all genres*, skill levels, and backgrounds are welcome.

May the words flow to your victory.

The Games returns in May!

Check here for this year's changes.

Count down with us to registration:

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Registration for 2022 begins May 1. See the calendar for details.

*The Writer's Workout rejects all political, religious, and erotic fiction.

Writer's Games 2021

The 2021 Writer's Games is closed and we are honored to have the privilege of reading over 1.7 million words produced in the 72-hour time limit this year.

Click on each winner's name to read their interview!

2021 Overall Winners:
3rd place: JB Hansen

2nd place: Teague LaBrosse
1st place: MM Schreier

Judges' Choice: Frances Turner

Pick up your copy of 72 Hours of Insanity, vol. 10:

Print: print

Digital: ebook

Overall Winners, 2021

10th Place, Bridget Haug

9th Place, Ella Moon

8th Place, Toni Risson

7th Place, K.M. Shapiro

6th Place, Sarah Connell

5th Place, Fiona Donaldson

4th Place, Lisa Fox

3rd Place, JB Hansen

2nd Place, Teague LaBrosse

1st Place, MM Schreier

The Writer's Workout is a global charity working to improve literacy through creative writing. We hold competitions, workshops, open calls, and discussions; provide motivation, tips, prompts, and giveaways; and offer a community rich in culture and skill. Check our donations page to learn more about how The Writer's Workout strengthens the writing community. 

The Writer's Games (originally dubbed the NaNoGames) was the brainchild of Heather Glomb. The first Games took place in May, 2014, with a goal to "just write". When the contest finished, writers wanted a stronger challenge and this group was born.

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