One of the most important types of questions to understand and be able to hit well is the Scripture Text Question. STQs cross all point values and are used by every writer. The key to success is to understand that these are not complex questions. In fact, they are among the simplest to hit, complete, and answer.
The very first thing to understand is that to properly interrupt a STQ, you must look for a key word. This is true of every single STQ you will hear. Sometimes this key word will be early in a question, but most often it will be later on, even after the word ‘quote.’ Question writers like to use the STQ as an indicator that quizzers need to wait. It’s sort of a warning to not hit early. Quizzers would do well to heed that warning.
There are two main types of STQs: Blind and contextual. The blind ones go like this:
for 30 points. 6-part answer. From 1st Corinthians chapter 1. How does Paul begin the phrase, quote, ‘of God?’
The contextual example goes like this:
for 10 points. 2-part answer. From 1st Corinthians chapter 2. What were not with, quote, ‘persuasive words?’
The difference is that a blind STQ requires the quizzer to hit immediately after the quote. Regardless of anything else, the key word will always be found there. A contextual STQ places the key word before the quote.
In the contextual example above, the key word is actually ‘with.’ The fact that it’s a two-part answer helps, and the ‘not’ gives you a big clue that you are looking for a negative statement. With chapter two only holding 16 verses, it’s a calculated risk, but one well worth taking.
The tougher task on contextual STQs is anticipating where the key word is going to land. If you can master this skill, you aren’t reacting to hearing a word, but are instead choosing to play the percentage that a key word will fall in certain place. In our example above, the calculated risk is to hit on the ‘not’ to get the ‘with.’
The best way to master this skill is with lots of practice. The more STQs you can hear from good writers, the better you’ll be able to anticipate key words. Use writers like Ely, Saiya, and Lewis for this.
It’s important to not try to ‘time’ these hits. A lot of quizzers have an internal clock in their head and after so many words, they hit, regardless of what those words are. This is a bad habit for quizzing in general, and especially so on STQs. You must get a key word in order to complete and answer these questions correctly.