A letter leader from Gunnedah has won the war of words and will go to the state finals of the 2019 Premier's Spelling Bee.
Annaliese Maguire won the junior section at the regional contest at Westdale Public School in Tamworth today.
The Gunnedah South Public School girl bested about 30 other children in her division.
The regional contest also had a senior section, and the words this year included such treacherous words as mania, commodious and rhapsody.
To prepare, students have access to the official word lists - but, after a few rounds, unseen words are taken from the Macquarie Dictionary.
They have 45 seconds to spell their given word.
Annaliese will compete in the state contest on November 8 at The ABC Centre in Sydney.
Regional co-ordinator Tenielle McKnight said there were strategies to help keen wordsmiths get the edge.
"I believe it's important to familiarise yourself with spelling rules and base words," Mrs McKnight said.
"But, overall, the number 1 best thing you can do improve your spelling is read, read and read."
The senior winner was Kane Fletcher of Timbumburi Public School, who will also go onto the state finals.
The junior runner-up was Frederick Blowes of Tamworth Public; the senior runner-up was Josiah Woods of Tamworth South Public.