** This competition is now closed but you are welcome to read the published writing and blog posts.**
Sports writing can be exciting and entertaining, illuminating and insightful...or all of these things. From surfing to croquet, from arm wrestling to cockroach racing, to the myriad of themes and issues both on and off the field—writing about sport can be as broad as sport itself.
Write a sports journalism piece (250-500 words) for a newspaper, magazine, or online publication.
- School game or match: Does your school team have a big game on the horizon? Go along and soak up the atmosphere. Take notes and photos. Capture the experience in words for your reader. Sometimes the most interesting things happen off the field so keep alert!
- Local competition: Perhaps your town or city has a table tennis tournament coming up, or soccer league play-offs, or a synchronized swimming competition. Check out the newspaper or an online events guide for inspiration.
- Favorite Sportsperson: Write a feature piece on your favorite sportsperson. What do you admire about them? Arrange an interview with them if you can.
- Ethics: Are you interested in how ethics and sports intersect? Explore the topic of performance enhancing drugs, unpaid student superstars vs. over-paid professionals, or the alleged high rates of violence and domestic abuse amongst some pro athletes.
- Health impacts: Dig into the health benefits of playing sports in high school. Alternatively, investigate the physical dangers of contact sports— such as the concussion controversy surrounding some codes of football.
- Women in Sports: Women's sports are greatly underrepresented in the media. Furthermore, very few women hold key positions in sports journalism. Write an op-ed on the underrepresenation of women in sport.
Regardless of what topic you choose, make sure to:
- Check out the resource below: "Sports Journalism: It's all in the Stucture"
- Focus your attention on one issue or event.
- Do some background research so that you have a good understanding of the context, and what’s already been written about your topic. You may want to look into the historical record of a team you’re writing about, or a coach’s history, or the incidence of doping 20 years ago versus today.
- Seek out the opinions of others and gather interesting quotes! If you’re writing about a sports event at your school, interview players, coaches, and fans. If you’re writing about a national or international event or issue, draw on newspaper and magazine articles.
- Make your writing come alive with active, interesting language… especially verbs! See if you can replace “to be” verbs (am/are/is/were/was) with vibrant motion words.
We are thrilled to have Nathaniel Vinton
as our guest judge. Nathaniel is a reporter for the New York Daily News’ sports department, and a member of the sports investigation team, often writing about performance-enhancing drugs. A lifelong student of Alpine ski racing, he has covered the sport for Ski Racing, The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, SKI, Skiing, Men's Journal, Skiing History
and other publications. His new nonfiction book, The Fall Line; How American Ski Racers Conquered a Sport on the Edge
is just out!
Best Entry: $100 (winning piece + author interview will be featured on Write the World’s website and blog)
Runner up: $50
Best Peer Review: $50 (reviewer interview will be featured on Write the World’s website and blog)
What’s Different about Write the World Competitions?
Prizes: The winning entrant will receive $100, and the runner-up and best peer-reviewer will receive $50.
Professional Recognition: The winning entry, plus the runner-up and best peer review, will be featured on our blog, with commentary from our guest judge.
Expert Review: Turn your rough draft in by Monday, May 4th, and get feedback from our team of experts—authors, writing teachers, and educational professionals.
Competition Opens: Monday, April 27th
Submit draft for Expert Review (optional): Monday, May 4th
Reviews returned to Writers: Thursday, May 7th
Final Submissions Due: Tuesday, May 12th
Winners Announced: Friday, May 29th
June Competition: Fantasy Writing Opens Monday, June 1
Stay tuned for more details!