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Rewrite Tolkien March contest winners – & a special announcement!



Thank you to everyone that submitted an entry for the March Rewrite Tolkien contest – ‘The Hobbit’ in the style of Douglas Adams.  We had a lot of fun reading them!

Before posting this months’ winners, we wanted to announce that going forward, the contest will be held every other month.  This will give everyone more time to submit their best work, and the judges more time to read and enjoy the entries.   The next contest will be held in May – stay tuned for more details!

This months grand prize winner is:

“Untitled” by J.J. Lendi of Pittsburgh, PA.  Congratulations, J.J.!  Your entry will also be read live on TORn Book Club webcast this Sunday, April 6th;  click the link for showtimes.

Our runners-up are:

“Untitled” by Tom Essex (whereabouts unknown) and “There and Back Again: A Hitchhikers Guide to Middle-earth” by Jim of Chicago, IL.  Congrats to you both!


Untitled by J.J. Lendi (Pittsburgh, PA)

Somewhere in the recesses of history, before the advent of iPhones, eBooks or any other memorabilia beginning with a lowercase vowel, but after the beginnings of life on the planet, whether you believe life began with the Great Music of the Ainur, with creatures coming out of the sea and into the trees, or with one man’s unwitting donation of his own rib, there existed a world of magic, quests, and a fair amount of questionable jewelry.

This world was known to its inhabitants as Middle-Earth, though no one there seemed to know or care what exactly it was in the middle of or if they should be at all concerned about that highly suspect name.

This land of Middle-Earth plotted along for quite some time with a fair amount of drama. The many deceits by the evil Ainur known as Melkor, the sinking of great city of Numenor and the bending of the world, the Last Great Alliance of Elves and Men against the forces of evil in Mordor, and the final defeat of the Dark Lord Sauron by plunging his One Ring into the fires of Mount Doom.

This is not any of those stories.

But this is a story that involves a mountain, along with a healthy number of Elves, a fairly magical wizard, and a staggering amount of walking around. It does not, however, include any Dark Lords or places nicknamed “Doom”. So if that’s the only kind of thing you go in for then best to close this book now and save yourself from a rather disappointing perusal and the publishers of this book from a negative review on Good Reads.

However, if you are not overly obsessed with stories that culminate in the high-profile rescue of the entire world from the forces of evil and have continued reading, it might interest you to know that this book is chiefly about a rather oddly named chap called Bilbo who is in fact no taller than your average Kindergartner. In fact, this book has quite a few pint-sized heroes and villains, some of them called Hobbits, like Bilbo, who have the same basic interests as the stoner you lived across the hall from at University, some of them called Dwarves, who are more obsessed with digging in the ground than even the most avid gopher, and one particularly strange creature called Gollum, who is exactly as awkward looking as his name would suggest.

And while this might not sound nearly as exciting as a story with words like “Dark Lord” and “Doom”, where the entire fate of the world is hanging in the balance, it scores over that particular book in two rather important respects.

First, it’s much shorter, which makes it cheaper to purchase and faster to get through; and second, it’s one of the only books you’ll read this year that features a talking dragon.

But the story of the pint-sized hobbit named Bilbo, the story of his quest that doesn’t involve the end of the world, and the story of how that quest becomes inextricably intertwined with the lives of Dwarves and Elves and a talking dragon, begins very simply.

 It begins with a hole in the ground.



Untitled by Tom Essex

This is a story of long ago, when spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women and small furry-footed creatures from the Shire were real small furry-footed creatures from the Shire.

Far out in the little known north of the unfashionable part of Middle-earth lies a small unregarded country known as the Shire, inhabited by a diminutive race known as hobbits, who are so amazingly unaware of the outside world they still think second breakfasts are a pretty neat idea (believing that time is an illusion, breakfast time doubly so).

This story begins as so many stories do: it begins with a house. This house was on the top of the Hill, and inhabiting it was Bilbo Baggins. He was fifty, never quite at ease with himself, and in appearance suspiciously like a three and a half foot Arthur Dent with hairy feet – and at present he no more knows his destiny than pipe-weed knows the history of Tobold the Old and the South Farthing.

It so happened that, on one fine morning when Mr Baggins was enjoying a pipe of Old Toby, Gandalf came by. He appeared to be an old man, but was in fact a Maiar spirit from somewhere in the vicinity of the Undying Lands. Bilbo had never, ever suspected this.

“Good morning!” said Bilbo.

One of the things Gandalf found hardest to understand about mortals was their habit of continually stating and repeating the very very obvious, for example: “Good morning!”, and “You’re very tall”, and, “They’re taking the hobbits to Isengard”.

The wizard looked sternly at the hobbit in exactly the way a hobbit is looked at sternly by a wizard, and proceeded to give a complete etymological breakdown and, in the hobbit’s view, slightly pedantic analysis of the phrase “Good morning”, which was strange as he had been the one to use it in the first place.

“Can I help you?” said Bilbo, very much hoping the exact opposite.

“My name is Gandalf, and Gandalf means me.”

Bilbo had guessed as much, and hoped the old man’s obsession with grammar would end soon.

“I am looking for someone to share in an adventure – the chance to see the wonders of Middle-earth on less than thirty silver pennies a day. And help a band of travelling dwarves reclaim a kingdom and a pile of treasure from an enormous fire-breathing dragon. Along the way, there shall be giant spiders, goblins (not exactly evil, but bad-tempered, bureaucratic and generally unpleasant, who wouldn’t raise a finger to save their own mother from the Ravenous Balrog Beast of Morgoth), deformed schizophrenic hobbits and malevolent jewellry.”

Bilbo was not fond of adventures. They made one late for dinner. And he had no desire to see the wonders of Middle-earth, no matter how reasonable the budget.

And he knew nothing about dwarves.

The Red Book of Westmarch has a few interesting things to say about dwarves.

A dwarf, it says, has a fondness for a wide range of food and alcoholic beverages. Whilst some prefer pork pies and salad, others may prefer mince pies and cheese, or raspberry jam and apple-tart. All have a particular love of ale (although they are as of yet unaware of the invention of the Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster). They are remarkably skilled at craftsmanship, and value gold and the stones of the earth above all else, even pork pies and salad. They are also proud of their beards, with many husbands boasting of their wives’ impressive facial hair. Although they can be calculating and cowardly, they are generally hoopy froods, though they have a very thorough and officious approach to contracts. Their poetry is generally accepted as being significantly better than that of Vogons.

Note: They have yet to fully appreciate the true merit of the Towel. When Mr Bilbo Baggins ran off without a pocket handkerchief, he failed to understand the true importance of a Towel, and later came to regret it.

Meanwhile, Gandalf leaned on his staff and continued to stare at the hobbit from under his bushy brows. This is about the most aggressive thing to do to a hobbit digesting his second breakfast, the equivalent of going up to a human and saying “Blood… blood… blood… blood…”, or a dispossessed dwarf king and saying “Homeless… homeless… homeless… homeless…”.

Or indeed dangling a piece of malevolent jewellery in front of a deformed schizophrenic hobbit.

The silence began to hang in the air exactly the way that bricks don’t.

Bilbo had begun to panic. He though seed-cake was in order. Seed-cake was good for occasions like this, he thought.

“Sorry!” squeaked Bilbo. “I don’t want any adventures, thank you. Not today. Good morning!”

Please no more grammar lessons, he thought. Please no more.

“But please come to tea – any time you like! Why not tomorrow? Come tomorrow! Goodbye!”

Bilbo scuttled back inside and shut the door.

Gandalf remained outside the door, laughing long and quietly to himself. Then, with the spike on his staff, he carved two words in large, friendly letters into the wood: ‘DON’T PANIC’.



There and Back Again:  A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Middle-Earth by Jim – Chicago, Illinois

Far out in the uncharted backwaters at the end of one of the spiral arms of the Milky Way was a small, obscure yellow star, and orbiting that star at a distance of 93 million miles was a small, obscure planet with a continent called “Middle-Earth.” On an uncharted corner of that continent was a small green country called the Shire, and in a hole in a small town of that land there lived a “hobbit.”

What are hobbits?  No one these days has seen one, and some have called them myths.  It is said that the Ents’ Compendium of Living Things has an entry on them, but no one knows for sure.  That book is so long that the publisher still hasn’t finished it, and no one has been able to finish reading the first chapter of the proofs.  The Red Book of Westmarch says hobbits are a race that looks like Men (who hobbits call the “Big People”) only much shorter, usually chubbier, and with large hairy feet.

This is a story of one hobbit, whose name was Bilbo Baggins.  It is also the story of a remarkable book called The Hitchhikers’ Guide to Middle-Earth.  The story starts with a house.  More accurately, it starts with a hole, because Bilbo’s house (like most hobbit houses) was a hole delved into a hill.  Not a damp, dank hole, mind you, or a dusty sandy hole.  Or a giant hole in an asteroid that’s really the mouth of a space monster.  It was a hobbit hole, comfortable and well-appointed.

One morning, Bilbo was just about to drink his tea when he heard a knock at the door.  He opened it and saw a large group of hobbits with pickaxes and shovels.  “Can I help you?”  Bilbo asked.  “Yes,” the leader answered, “you can get out of the way so we can level this place for the new mill.”

“Oh, excuse me.” Bilbo began.  Then he shook his head in a double take.  If he had started his tea, it would have been a spit take.  “Wait, what?  Why?”

“Mayor’s orders.  The plans have been on file in his office for six months.”

“Otho!  I should have known the Sackville-Bagginses would be behind this.”

“So will you get out of the way?”

“I most certainly will not.”  Bilbo crossed his arms.  “You’ll have to go over my dead body.”

“Oh, bother,” the leader, whose name was Ted Sandyman, said.

Just then, a tall old Man with a pointed hat, a very long grey beard, and a gnarled wooden staff strode past the workers and up to the front of Bilbo’s house.  Bilbo and Sandyman were engaged in a staredown and didn’t acknowledge him.  “Ahem,” the old man cleared his throat.

“Good morning,” Bilbo mumbled, then resumed his staring contest.

“Good morning?”  the old man asked.  “Do you mean that it is a good morning, or that you want me to have a good morning, or that you want it to be good whether I want it or not?”

“Er, I guess I didn’t really mean any of those.  I’m having a terrible morning, and I don’t know who you are.  So, good morning.  The one that means good-bye.”

“Bilbo Baggins!!!”  An angry cloud drifted across his kindly face.  “I am Gandalf.  You used to know me.  To think I would live to be good-morninged by Belladonna Took’s son, as if I had the Black Breath.”

“Gandalf!  Good gracious!  Not the Gandalf, the wizard who gave us such excellent fireworks shows when I was a boy.  I had no idea you were still wizarding, or whatever it is wizards do.  What brings you here?”

“We need to talk.  Now,” he emphasized.  Gandalf looked nervously to the eastern sky, as if watching for an approaching storm.  “Are you busy?”

“Not really, just trying to stop this gang from destroying my house, you know.”

Wizards are literalists normally, and in his hurried state Gandalf had no time to appreciate sarcasm. Plus, of all those present he was the only one who knew that the workers’ plans for Bilbo’s house were, in the space of minutes, about to become a moot point.  “Good, let’s go to the Prancing Pony in Bree.  We can talk there.”

“Excuse me, but I think you missed my point.  This good fellow,” Bilbo nodded at Sandyman, who nodded back, “says he and his gang mean to demolish my house, and I’m in the midst of standing off.  So, no prancing ponies, no talking, no Brees.”

“Oh,” Gandalf trailed off in thought and he stroked his long beard.  Once more he looked anxiously to the sky.  He had no time for reasoning, and no desire to use force.  That left only magic – the special words he learned long ago to make any crowd of hobbits disperse.

“Excuse me, lads,” he announced loudly.  “With all this standing about, aren’t you missing second breakfast?”

Forty-two pairs of hobbit eyes looked at each other, then forty-two pairs of hobbit hands dropped their tools and forty-two pairs of large, hairy bare feet ran to their respective neighborhood pubs.  Sandyman looked back, saw he no longer had no backers, thought about eating, gave an embarrassed half-bow and excused himself.

“Excellent!” Gandalf rubbed his hands together.  “Now, let’s be off to Bree.”

“Why can’t we just talk here?  We’re alone now and I expect they’ll be back.”

“Trust me, my dear hobbit.  In about –” he paused and glanced furtively at the sky — “five minutes or so, here is the very last place you will want to be.”

“Oh, all right.  Let me get my pocket-handkerchief.” Bilbo said, fumbling at his vest.

“Forget the handkerchief!  But do bring a towel.”

“A towel?”

“A towel, my boy.  The most indispensable thing you can have when you’re out and about in Middle-Earth.  If you’re shivering in the Misty Mountains, you can wrap it around you for warmth.  If your friend is getting pulled into a willow tree in the Old Forest, you can use it as a lifeline.  If you’re sleeping on the stones in Moria, you can fold it into a pillow.  If you’re wandering Wilderland you can wrap your supplies with it.  And if you’re wet from crossing the Anduin River, you can dry yourself off with it.  Now fly, you fool!  Our time is almost up.”

Bilbo ducked in and emerged a moment later holding a large guest towel.  “Er, did you bring a wagon?  Or a horse?”  he asked, looking about.  “Bree’s a ways off from here.”

“No wagon today, my lad.  We’ll be hitchhiking.”

Before Bilbo could ask what that meant, Gandalf thumped his staff onto the ground.  Bilbo noticed that its length consisted of five branches that wound around each other; at the top, four branches curled into a ball while the fifth stuck out, looking curiously like an outstretched thumb.

Then, Bilbo heard the rush of giant wings above him and looked up.  “Look!  An Eagle!  An Eagle is coming!”

“That’s our ride, Bilbo.  Hop on!”  And they flew off on the Eagle’s back.

About Eagles, the Hitchhiker’s Guide to Middle-Earth says:  An Eagle is, of course, the best way to hitch a lift if you’re really in a pinch.  Problem is, they only show up if you’re really in a pinch.  They’re never around when a lift would be helpful or even important.  No, it pretty much has to be the end of the world.  There has been a lot of talk about this among the hitch-hiking community, but don’t mention it to an Eagle.  One time, a group of Eagles rescued the last surviving warriors as their village in Beleriand was being sacked by Orcs.  One warrior, Waldo, told his Eagle carrier:  “You know, we might have avoided a lot of blood if you and your mates had shown up a little earlier. Or if you’d come by a day ago to tell us the bloody Orcs were coming.  I’m grateful and all, but just saying.”  Waldo never made it to the destination.  And his best friend Beren, who stayed quiet, ended up becoming the greatest hero in history and marrying the most beautiful woman ever known.  To this day, whenever someone is about to make a smart remark to a superior being like an Eagle or an Elf, someone else reminds them: “Where’s Waldo?”

After the first few shaky moments aloft, Bilbo settled in and remarked, “this hitching is not half bad.  How does one go about it?”

“There’s a whole book on the subject,” Gandalf pulled a thick, weather-beaten leather book from the folds of his cloak and handed it to Bilbo.  “The most important rule is here on the cover.”

Two words in large print, in the Common Speech, took up nearly all of the front cover:  “DON’T PANIC.”  They were repeated on the back cover in Elvish.

“Don’t panic,” Bilbo repeated.  “I rather like it already.”

“Yes, don’t panic.  And don’t look down.”

Bilbo looked down.  And panicked.  Because at that moment he saw a gigantic fireball consume the entirety of the Shire a thousand feet below, turning his home and his town, everything he knew, to ash and a whiff of carbon monoxide.  He let go of the book.  Gandalf barely managed to catch and save it before it fell all the way to the ground.

“Don’t panic!” Gandalf reminded him.

“The whole bloody Shire’s been destroyed!  Now’s a perfect time to panic!”

“Fool of a Took!  Be careful or you’ll throw us both off!”  Gandalf grabbed Bilbo to steady him.  For a moment Bilbo felt he was about to fall, and he fainted in Gandalf’s arms.

A few minutes later, the Eagle dropped them off at the sign of the Prancing Pony.  Gandalf gently nudged him awake, steadied him, and helped him inside.  Bilbo was still shaking as the innkeeper led them to a table.

“I guess I should thank you for getting me out of there.  I gather that is what you wanted to talk about?”

“Actually, that was completely random and unrelated.  I was coming to see you anyway, and it was just lucky I happened to come today.  I found out about the demolition just this morning.  A chance meeting, as they say here in Bree.”  The innkeeper brought two ales.  Bilbo downed half of his in one gulp.

Gandalf leaned close and spoke with a low voice.  “To begin with, I’m not from Middle-Earth at all.  I’m from a place called Lorien, many thousands of leagues West, across the Sea.”

“What brought you here?”

“Well, among other things, I’m a roving researcher for that book I showed you.  It’s called The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Middle-Earth.  A while back I did a chapter on the Shire.”

“Really?  What did it say?”

Gandalf cleared his throat, stood up straight, placed his right hand on his chest, and dramatically declared:  “Mostly harmless.”  He enunciated each syllable, with special emphasis on most, and sat back down.

This time Bilbo did do a spit take, spraying ale across the table.  “Two words?  That’s all you could think to say about my homeland?  And now it’s all gone?”

“Actually, one word.  The last contributor already said the ‘harmless’ part.  I added ‘mostly.’”  Again Gandalf gave the word extra emphasis, and this time he added a knowing nod and wink, brimming with pride.  “And let me tell you, it took years of research, and I was considered quite the revolutionary back home for that.  Anyway, I came to ask you to join us on an adventure.”

“I’ve rather had my fill of adventure for this morning, thank you!”  And with that, Bilbo finished his ale and wiped his hand across his lips.  He was about to get up and leave when he realized he had nowhere to go.  “Wait a minute – did you say join ‘us’?”

Posted in Contests, Events, The Hobbit

The Hobbit: There and Back Again release date pushed back to premiere at Comic-Con in July 2015

uploads_d08fee9f-5517-430c-9698-135855d7b943-the-hobbit-there-and-back-again In shocking news, Warner Bros. today announced that the release of The Hobbit: There And Back Again will be pushed back so the final film of Bilbo Baggins’ adventure can premiere at Comic-Con in July 2015. The new worldwide release date is July 29, 2015.

Premieres during Comic-Con International in San Diego are nothing new. “The 300” premiered in Petco Park a few years ago, heralded by bare-chested Spartans throughout the week-long convention. “Cowboys and Aliens” also held their premiere in San Diego during the convention, with DreamWorks booking an theater complex for the event.

This was an April Fool gag, and is not a true story. It is false, and all details have been invented. We hope that everyone enjoyed the joke.

Early details hint that Jackson and Warner Bros. are planning something on an even-larger scale: a massive week-long Middle-earth-themed carnival of events and activities that turn TABA’s debut into “the largest-ever world premiere of a film”. We’ve also noted that it sets Warner Bros. up for a strong one-two punch at the box office with the release of Pan just two weeks earlier.

Readers will, of course, recall that the date for The Hobbit: There And Back Again has, already been pushed back once from July to December 2014. I think we can all sincerely hope that this is the last shift in date for the film!

The official press release follows:

“The Hobbit: There and Back Again” to be released July 29, 2015 and will premiere at Comic-Con International


Posted in Comic Rumors, ComicCon, Contests, Conventions, Events, Fans, Film Screenings, Fool, Headlines, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, Hobbit Movie Rumors, Meet Ups, MGM, New Line Cinema, Peter Jackson, Premieres, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, Warner Bros.

Show us your passion for Smaug — COMPETITION TIME!

headCalling all Middle-earth artists!  To celebrate the upcoming Home Video release of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, we here at have got together with Warner Bros. to bring you an exciting COMPETITION — ‘Show us your passion for Smaug’!

What do you have to do?

We know you love the unassessably wealthy one — as Peter Jackson and his team realized him on the big screen. We want to see that passion poured into your own homage to the Greatest of Calamities! You might choose to paint, sketch, embroider or sculpt (or even bake!) your Smaug — the only restriction is that it must be original art created with your own fair hands (so no computer generated wyverns, please!). Then send us a photo (or three) of your Smaug homage for a chance to win some great prizes!

Who can enter?


Posted in Blu-Ray, Contests, Creations, DVD/Blu-Ray, DVDs, Events, Fans, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, Shop, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.

Reminder: Rewrite Tolkien contest deadline is March 26th!



Time is running out to submit your entry for this months Rewrite Tolkien contest (The Hobbit’ in the style of Douglas Adams)!  The contest deadline is 12:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on Wednesday, March 26th 2014.  

Our judges will read through all of your submissions, and choose the best of the bunch.  The Grand Prize Winner will get their entry read live on’s newest show, TORn Book Club as well as having it published here on  The runner-up will have their story published on

Good luck!

Posted in Contests, Events, The Hobbit

Voting Begins Now – Middle-earth Madness 2014 Round 1

2014BracketMORIA — As we reported yesterday, the bracket is finalized and the match-ups are set. Our annual Middle-earth March Madness is now underway!

A note on voting: This is a tongue-in-cheek attempt to ‘crown’ a victor of Middle-earth. Each one of you will participate in your own manner. Some may take it very seriously and do your homework to try and scholarly determine who would actual win the battles. Some of you will simply vote based on popularity. Heck, some of you will vote randomly! However you participate, we encourage you to have fun with it.  We encourage you to make your case for a certain combatant in the comments, our forums, Facebook or twitter.

For those of you confused by some of the names, educate yourself by simply googling the name. We found that Wikipedia has a plethora of information on each character/object.

Voting ends at 10pm ET on the final day of the round. In this case, voting for the first round match-ups will end on March 20th. We will then calculate the winners, and post a new bracket on March 21st.

Need a bigger version of the bracket? [Click here]


Posted in Contests, Events, Fans, Headlines, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers

Middle-earth Madness 2014 Unleashed!

2014BracketMORIA —’s selection committee has been hard at work, delving too deep into lore and frivolous fandom to bring you the third? another edition of Middle-earth Madness! The top seeds in each bracket are predictable and Hobbit-book-centric, with fan favorites Thorin, Bilbo, Gandalf and Smaug each holding the top spot in their respective brackets. Smaug anchors the LONELY MOUNTAIN bracket, Bilbo is at home in BAG END, while Thorin heads EREBOR and everybody’s (most everybody’s) favorite wizard and 2013 champion lands in MIRKWOOD. (Don’t expect it to all make sense, we are after all voting for fictional characters based on no specific criteria in a bracket format made popular by NCAA basketball in the 20th Century. Just go with it.)

Smaug is a repeat one seed but in the 2013 version of the contest, the other tops spots were The One Ring, Balin (who lost his opening round match with Pippin, a sixteen seed, by .05 percent) and Galadriel. In 2012, with a smaller field, Gandalf and Bilbo were top seeds along with Legolas and Glorfindel. The first winner  was Sam in 2012 with Gandalf snagging the Maiar community a trophy in 2013. Can the wizard be stopped in 2014?

New to the bracket is Tauriel, the elf maiden entirely made up by filmmaker Peter Jackson’s writing team. The bad-muther elf has the potential to face Gandalf in the Mirkwood bracket if they each win their first four contests. Tauriel must first fend off Saruman’s Palantir. Thranduil, Beorn and Bard are the other second seeds and each seems just fabulous enough to be real contenders. Bard, in the same bracket as Smaug, just might be in the right place to pull an upset. Meanwhile his Black Arrow faces the Watcher In The Water in the Bag End bracket. Another object making its first appearances and likely offending purists and bracketologists alike, is the Bunny Sled. In a tough matchup, it must face Angcalagon, known as “The Black” and the greatest of all winged dragons from Middle-earth’s first age. He was likely the largest dragon that ever graced Middle-earth and could likely use Smaug as a toothpick, but could be erased by a sled – pulled by rabbits.

The Erebor branch of the bracket is filled with dark creatures and objects including rings and The Arkenstone. Once a champion, Sam is now a #10 seed and faces Azog. But the white CGI movie Azog or the vengeful creature from the LOTR appendicies? Only voters can decide who will prevail. If Samwise can down Azog (he was a ring-bearer after all) he may prove Tauriel’s undoing in the second round. Beren (a symbol for J.R.R. Tolkien himself) and Luthein (the author’s wife Edith) each made the field and are always a tough out.

Be sure to follow the complete bracket to see which imaginary character gets an imaginary mithril shirt engraved with MIDDLE-EARTH MADNESS across the chest.

Posted in Contests, Events, Fans, Headlines, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers

Rewrite Tolkien March contest

It’s a new month, so that must mean it’s time for a new Rewrite Tolkien contest, where you, the fans, can rewrite your favorite passages or scenes in the style of a classic author or theme.  We will select a theme each month, and then it’s up to you to put your spin on it.

The theme for the month of March is…




‘The Hobbit’ in the style of Douglas Adams.  Using characters and settings from ‘The Hobbit’, create your own sci-fi/fantasy crossover.  Be creative, however the judges are begging you not to submit any Vogon poetry!

Our judges will read through all of your submissions, and choose the best of the bunch.  The Grand Prize Winner will get their entry read live on’s newest show, TORn Book Club as well as having it published here on  The runner-up will have their story published on

The contest deadline is 12:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on Wednesday, March 26th 2014.   Please be sure to read all of the submission guidelines below and submit your entry to Good luck!


  • Contest is open to individuals worldwide, age 13 and up at the time of entry.
  • To avoid duplicate submissions, please include your name and location on all entries.
  • To qualify, submissions must be a minimum of 500 words and maximum of 2000 words, feature at least one character from The Hobbit and be in the style of the author/genre for that month’s contest.
  • All submissions should be emailed to with the entry in the body of the email.  No attachments.
  • No posting your entry on the message boards or TORn’s Facebook page.
  • No profanity. We realize that some authors’ styles require it, so if you MUST use profanity, please censor it with asterisks.
  • By submitting, you are giving TORn permission to reproduce your entry on our website or other formats (Twitter, Facebook, etc…)
  • Only one entry per person, and each entry may not be submitted more than once.
  • Contestants are only eligible to win the Grand Prize once in a 12 month period.
  • Entries that do not follow these submission guidelines will not be considered for the contest.


Posted in Contests, Events, The Hobbit

Rewrite Tolkien February contest winner

Jane_Austen_coloured_versionIt’s long past time to announce February’s Rewrite Tolkien contest winner – apologizes for the delay!  We had several great entries for February’s theme – ‘The Hobbit’ in the style of Jane Austen – but as they say, There Can Be Only One.

February’s winner is….



Jill Richardson of Chicago, Illinois!   Congratulations, Jill – Your entry will be read live on TORn Book Club this Sunday, 9th March.

Stay tuned for March’s contest (hint: don’t forget your towel) and keep those entries coming in!


An Unexpected Party (Which Is, of Course, Most Disagreeable) by Jill Richardson (Chicago, IL)

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a dwarf, formerly in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of its return.

However little known this truth may be to the individuals involved in the particulars of his quest, it is so well fixed in the minds of dwarves and their subsequent generations that any necessary additions to their party are quite considered their rightful property.

So Bilbo Baggins learned when a large party of such dwarves paid an him afternoon call. An entire party to whom, I must add, he had not yet been properly introduced.

This lamentable fact had no effect on Sir Oakenshield, however, as he proceeded to deliver his haughty glance around the room—a room which did not quite meet his specifications. “It seems a trifle shabby that I must hang my own cloak,” he sniffed to no one in particular. “And that,” here he touched his elbow which had been regrettably bruised on the threshold of Bilbo’s establishment, “one must be injured in order to be welcomed into this . . . estate.” He waved off Bilbo’s profuse if somewhat unrequired apologies. “Nevertheless, let us attend to our business. I feel sure that someone might offer us something stronger than tea before the evening is at its end.”

“What, if I may be so bold . . .” began Mr. Baggins. (In truth, Mr. Baggins and ‘bold’ were not two words commonly associated.) “What is the nature of this business? And why . . .” He began to stutter now at his recklessness in questioning so great a personage. “Why must it take place in my humble abode?”

“Because, Mr. Baggins, the party requires your services.” Sir Gandalf, who had hitherto remained quiet, spoke. Mr. Baggins felt sure from previous encounters that when Gandalf stood quietly, some mischief would follow. “The offer would be generous,” he continued.

“Indeed.” Bombur addressed his host for the first time. “And you must realize, Mr. Baggins, that in spite of your manifold attractions . . . ” At this his gaze lingered on the dining table so recently laden with its lavish substance. “It is by no means certain that another such offer may ever be made to you.”

“I beg your pardon, my friend of generous girth.” (It was Bilbo’s turn for the display of some little wit.) “I cannot mistake your meaning. I may not have ten thousand a year, gentlemen, but I live comfortably enough.” He turned up his own nose at Sir Oakenshield here, a feat made all the more difficult by the fact that he was, most charitably, a half-foot below that dwarf’s stature. “I do not need to work for my keep like a . . . a grocer.”

“Ah, but have you a taste for adventure, sir?” Kili betrayed his own taste for such uncomfortable pursuits by his shining eyes and eager looks. “And surely you would not object to taking in the sights at Laketown, particularly such a sight as Smaug the magnificent dragon. Quite the prodigious tale you would have to tell, you understand.”

“Dragons? Adventure? I should prefer to be struck by lightning that endure anything so disagreeable. And who is this Smaug? I have certainly never heard of him. I am in no humor at present to give consequence to dragons who are slighted by history books.”

“My dear Mr. Baggins,” queried Fili. “Have you not heard of the dreadful row at The Lonely Mountain? But I suppose that news of real import rarely travels so far to the country. Ah country living; it is so, enchantingly . . . innocent.”

Then something Tookish arose in Bilbo. He was as aware as the next gentleman of the dismissive nature of young master Kili’s tone, and his noble lineage of Bullroarer Took could be denied no further. “I assure you, Mr. Kili, the country is quite as full of information as your Lonely Mountain or whatever place you mean. Pardon me, I don’t pretend to understand what you are talking about, but tell me what you wish to be done. I am at your service. Who is this Smaug you wish me to take notice of, and in what part of the country does he reside?”

Sir Oakenshield, grand in stature and, if truth be known, rather plodding in speech, began the tale. “My grandfather possessed both title and fortune, you know, and as his rightful heir, I stood to inherit. But through the wiles of a penniless fortune-hunter, all was lost in the halls of Erebor.”

“Smaug, the dragon in question, simply rose from nowhere to make his attempt at our fortune. He had no parents of consequence, no substance. A mercenary fellow, make no mistake.” Balin punctuated his remarks with a stern shake of his head.

“And it was a good deal too rude of him too, I believe, but then, he was a younger son, you know, and his brother got all that there was to live upon when the old dragon passed away. Younger sons must make their way in the world in some fashion.” As a younger son himself, Oin might be forgiven this remark, had he chosen to time it more prudently.

That it was not prudent became clear by Sir Oakenshield’s withering glare. “He is a cursed creature, and thus must be those who defend him. Let us formulate a plan and be quick about it. I desire to quit this establishment by morning and be on our journey.”

“But how shall we manage to regain what is rightfully ours?” Bofur’s petulant speech demonstrated that he had no plan himself for this endeavor.

“There is a secret door on the side of the mountain . . .” began Gandalf.

“Secret? Is that quite . . . seemly? It does appear so . . . so . . . not quite the thing to take such a backhanded approach.” The Baggins portion of Bilbo’s lineage began to reassert its adherence to strict propriety.

“Shall we have some music?” Fili felt it best to distract the company. “I sing tolerably well, but I do not play, so perhaps my brother would consent to accompany me? How about the Misty Mountains tune?”

So wore the evening, while good friends enjoyed good conversation, and those perhaps not so well pleased by the company sat in corners brooding, or stood together making disparaging remarks on the dress or style of Mr. Baggins’ establishment. That Bilbo would go was determined. That he would obtain the dwarves’ good graces quite another.

At length, Bilbo stifled a yawn and rose. “In any case, good sirs, before I retire I shall require one matter to be resolved once for all. In no way shall I leave my home without my pocket handkerchiefs. It is simply not proper. Good evening to you all.”


Posted in Contests, Events, The Hobbit

Reminder: Rewrite Tolkien February contest ends February 24th

Jane_Austen_coloured_versionJust a reminder to everyone – February’s Rewrite Tolkien contest (The Hobbit in the style of Jane Austen) comes to an end this coming Monday, February 24 at 12 PM (Eastern Standard Time). That means you have just under 3 days to submit those entries – so there’s not a moment to lose!

Contest information and submission guidelines can be found here. Happy writing! (more…)

Posted in Contests, Events, Fans, Hobbit Book, Miscellaneous, The Hobbit

Rewrite Tolkien February Contest

It’s here!  February’s Rewrite Tolkien contest, where you, the fans, can rewrite your favorite passages or scenes in the style of a classic author or theme.  We will select a theme each month, and then it’s up to you to put your spin on it.

In honor of Valentine’s Day, the theme for the month of February is:



The Hobbit in the style of Jane Austen

“You pierce my soul.  I am half agony, half hope…I have loved none but you.” ~Persuasion

Using characters and settings from ‘The Hobbit’, put together a romantic tale in the style of ‘Emma’, ‘Pride and Prejudice’, ‘Persuasion’, or any of Ms. Austen’s other works.  Get creative, but please keep your entry family friendly / PG rated!

Our judges will read through all of your submissions, and choose the best of the bunch.  The Grand Prize Winner will get their entry read live on’s newest show, TORn Book Club as well as having it published here on  The runner-up will have their story published on

The contest deadline is 12:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on Monday, February 24th 2014.   Please be sure to read all of the submission guidelines below and submit your entry to Good luck!


  • Contest is open to individuals worldwide, age 13 and up at the time of entry.
  • To avoid duplicate submissions, please include your name and location on all entries.
  • To qualify, submissions must be a minimum of 500 words and maximum of 2000 words, feature at least one character from The Hobbit and be in the style of the author/genre for that month’s contest.
  • All submissions should be emailed to with the entry in the body of the email.  No attachments.
  • No posting your entry on the message boards or TORn’s Facebook page.
  • No profanity. We realize that some authors’ styles require it, so if you MUST use profanity, please censor it with asterisks.
  • By submitting, you are giving TORn permission to reproduce your entry on our website or other formats (Twitter, Facebook, etc…)
  • Only one entry per person, and each entry may not be submitted more than once.
  • Contestants are only eligible to win the Grand Prize once in a 12 month period.
  • Entries that do not follow these submission guidelines will not be considered for the contest.


Posted in Contests, Events, The Hobbit

Rewrite Tolkien January Contest Winners

Extra_Extra2Thank you to everyone that participated in January’s Rewrite Tolkien contest – The Hobbit in the style of a newspaper article.  We received some great entries from around the world!

January’s contest winner is:

”Lake-town Welcomes Thorin Oakenshield” by Sanni Kanta-oksa of Finland

Sanni’s entry was read live on TORn Book Club (if you missed the latest episode, check it out on’s You Tube channel ), and has been reprinted below, along with the runner-up entry, “Disturber of the Peace” by Nancy Brown of England.

Congratulations to our winners, and stay tuned for information about February’s contest!


”Lake-town Welcomes Thorin Oakenshield”- The Lake-town Post

by Sanni Kanta-oksa (Finland)

The heir of Durin has arrived in Lake-town and promises to bring wealth back to the city.

Thorin Oakenshield, the leader of the company consisting of 13 dwarves and one hobbit, arrived in Lake-town in the autumn of T.A. 2941. The visit has been cited as ‘historical’, for the purpose of the party’s quest is to reclaim Erebor, which has been conquered by the dragon Smaug.

The company sought the Master of Lake-town and claimed Thorin to be the King Under the Mountain. The news was greeted warmly by the Master, as Thorin promised to grant a part of the treasure of Erebor to the people of Lake-town.

”This is actually really good news to us,” the Master told to The Post. ”Our people have suffered from hunger and poverty, but now we can put an end to all our troubles. The King Under the Mountain has promised to donate us, say, a big amount of money and riches.”

The citizens of Lake-town know very well songs of the King Under the Mountain who comes to take back his kingdom and consequently brings better standard of living to the city. The background of these prophecies remains unknown and there is no evidence about their reliability, but the inhabitants seem to be positive and confident.

”I have three children to feed and my house leaks, as there is a big hole in the roof,” Ingrid, from the western Lake-town, says to The Post. ”No one comes to repair the roof as I really don’t have anything to pay them. But if the legends are true and we are about to become richer than we’ve ever dreamed, then there is nothing to worry about. My children will be able to eat as much as they ever want and we don’t have to suffer from that leaking roof anymore.”

However, there are some who remain skeptical. ”In spite of the prophecies, I do not think it’s wise to go near that mountain,” remarked Bard, a father of one son. ”I think these are things that are supposed to be left alone. They are not for us.” The grim archer considers the whole quest as a doomed trial. ”If they [the dwarves] wake that dragon sleeping inside the mountain, then we will all be destroyed.”

The Master doesn’t seem to be too worried about the question whether the trial of the improvident dwarves and a hobbit, who has been described as ‘an official burglar’, will share opinions among the inhabitants. ”There will be some opposing, of course, as there always is,” The Master said mysteriously. ”But I think that will end as soon as everyone gets their share of the treasure. That will silent even the rest of the doubters.”

According to an assistant of the Master, the company will stay at the town for two weeks. They will be taken good care of, as the city offers them food and warm bed so they can rest before the undoubtedly most dangerous part of their quest.

The company will be expected to leave in two weeks. SK


Disturber of Peace returns! – The Shire Telegraph

Gandalf the Grey has been seen in Hobbiton, Hobbit has gone missing.

by Nancy Brown (England)

Gandalf the Grey, a wizard who is well-known in these parts for causing trouble wherever he goes has been seen wandering the Shire again for the first time since the Old Took died. He was last seen bothering a Mr Bilbo Baggins at his residence on the Hill in Hobbiton yesterday morning, who has not been seen since we spoke to him later that same afternoon. We have paid a visit to his home but received no answer.

The wizard is said to be responsible for the disappearings of many Hobbits. There have been numerous cases of quiet lads and lasses going off into the blue for mad adventures after hearing the remarkable tales which seem to follow him wherever he goes in an extraordinary fashion. He is often spotted with fireworks, especially when there is a party involved, which has given him the name “the Disturber of Peace”. It was the Old Took himself, Thain Gerontius who encouraged these firework displays.

Gandalf is first said to have visited the Shire during the Long Winter nearly two hundred of years ago where he supposedly helped to save the lives of many Hobbits, but despite his good deeds he has since become a bit of a nuisance around these parts. A dreadful famine followed the Long Winter and his visits have eventually become something of concern, especially for parents who do not wish to see their children disappear and perhaps never be seen again.

We spoke to Bilbo Baggins later that afternoon when he visited the shops. Mr Baggins is a very wealthy and respectable Hobbit whose mother is Belladonna Took and is therefore part of the Took Clan, who are very well known for their strange behaviour, having had more disappearances than any other family in these parts. A source has told us that as a child, Mr Baggins attended several parties to listen to Gandalf’s mad stories about Dragons, Goblins and princesses but we were assured that he had grown up to become a more sensible and unadventurous hobbit like his father. The Tooks may be well-known for having adventures but a Baggins is not. Bilbo told us he had no intention of disappearing. He said, “Well I could not believe it. There I was minding my own business when this wizard calling himself Gandalf showed up on the door step trying to get me to go on one of his terrible adventures. So I told him right away no. I said no hobbit around here will be having any adventures thank you very much! It is ridiculous to even suggest a Baggins would run off on some silly adventure”.

But Mr Baggins has not been seen or heard from since. Early this morning we received several unconfirmed reports of Dwarves sitting in the Green Dragon as though they were waiting for someone. We have spoken to one witness who claims he later saw Mr Baggins join them as though he was a friend with an outfit fit for walking and a well packed bag. The group are thought to have since left the Shire.

It appears that Gandalf’s latest visit has caused even more trouble and strange sightings than they normally do but if you see him or Bilbo return or have any other strange happenings to add to this story then please let us know.

Posted in Contests, Events, Fans, Parodies, The Hobbit

WIN TICKETS to see Orlando Bloom – coming to cinemas across America

Romeo and JulietAt the end of last year, Orlando Bloom was appearing on Broadway in Romeo and Juliet – here at TORn, we even gave away tickets so some lucky fans could go along and see the production. For those who didn’t make it to New York to see Shakespeare’s tragic play, the good news is that the show was filmed on November 27th 2013, and will be broadcast this February (13th to 19th) in cinemas across the United States.

The even better news is that TORn is once again giving away tickets!  We have two pairs of tickets to give away, so two lucky winners can go (with a friend – or a date!) and see the broadcast of Romeo and Juliet at the cinema nearest then.  (A full list of theatres and dates for the screenings can be found here.) What more romantic way to spend Valentine’s Day than watching the tale of Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers?


Posted in Contests, Events, Film Screenings, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Orlando Bloom, Stage Productions, The Hobbit