Pens, pencils and laptops at the ready, because when dawn breaks over a new year, nay, a new decade, the duel commences! For the next year, from January 1st, Chris Jackson and Rob Smedley, those titans of creative writing, will be engaged in an epic struggle of literary proportions.

In an effort to motivate themselves to write the novels they had long been putting off, Chris challenged Rob to a writing duel – to write a novel in the space of a year – and Rob accepted.

There are to be no rules, no word counts, and no holds barred. It’s a year-long, word-filled race to midnight New Years Eve 2010, at which point the duel is over. They will lay down their smoking keyboards and hold aloft their final manuscripts, however incomplete they may be. Details of how the winner is to be decided will be revealed… once Rob and Chris have figured that out.

Along the way they’ll both be chronicling their progress on this blog. Chris and Rob will both post a monthly update, along with short excerpts from their stories. Any pictures, quotes and drawings will be featured on the Scrapbook page, while information on our intrepid authors can be found on The Duelists page.  Other stuff, as well as links to the updates on this blog, will be tweeted on their Twitter feed. And don’t forget to subscribe to the blog so you can follow the action as it unfolds.

Come January 1st 2010 the duel begins: words will fly like bullets, ink will be spilled and both men will vie for victory across the pages. One writer will stand victorious, but either way you’ll win, because you’ll have two great novels to read come 2011.

Hope you enjoy the fight!

— Chris and Rob (The Duelists)