JACKSON TWP.: When Snehal Choudhury steps up to the microphone at the 2018 Scripps National Spelling Bee, she’ll be drawing upon months of intense study at her home.

For much of her preparation, Choudhury headed into a sanctuary she set up for herself after finding other spots at home a bit too loud or distracting. It’s a bedroom across the hall from her own room, fitted with maps on the walls and a bunch of pillows to plop down on before hitting the books.

Choudhury, 13, will represent the Canton Repository at the Bee outside Washington beginning Tuesday. She won the Rep’s Regional Final Spelling Bee in March.

She’s spent hours upon hours studying with her mother, Vanitha Vijayan. They’ve developed an intense work schedule that follows her homework for classes at Jackson Memorial Middle School, where Choudhury is an eighth-grader. Vijayan said Choudhury also studies on the school bus.

“I basically told her, this is the time,” Vijayan said. “Your school work, you finish, and then it’s hard, every day, even two hours. Some days we can. Some days it’s not easy.

“But I just tell her, ‘This is the time.’ Put your effort now, and then after going there on the stage don’t ever worry about it. Do what you can and if you don’t know a word, you don’t know a word. You did what you could. The outcome could be anything. It could be a win or just an experience, right? You don’t want to have that regret ...”

Choudhury is no stranger to competition, particularly in spelling bees. In 2017, she was runner-up in the Chicago region of the South Asian Spelling Bee.

“It taught me how much I really needed to know for spelling, how much I had left to learn,” she said. “I had a lot left to go. In Chicago, I got second place there. And they take the top two from each regional center to nationals, so I went to the national one, and the first three rounds was OK, because it was words I knew from their list, and the fourth round some completely unknown word and I just washed out.”

She lost on cahuilla, a Spanish word. “The words they asked were very difficult,” she said. “I thought, ‘How do these kids know these words?’”

She got her answer from the girl who placed first in that Chicago regional, Nilla Rajan of Chillicothe.

“My parents were like, ‘You should go and ask her what she did, and how did she prepare for it,’ ” Choudhury said. “So I asked her, and we started having a conversation, and it turned out that we had a lot in common, and I thought, this is a really great friend.”

The pair will reunite this week at Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in Oxon Hill, Md. Rajan will be Speller No. 327, and Choudhury is Speller No. 361. There are 516 spellers taking part.

They’ve remained friends and have been communicating during the run-up to the Scripps bee.

Choudhury also has received valuable assistance from a two-time national bee participant, Shiv Dewan. Now a Hoover High School student, Dewan reached out via email when he heard she won. Choudhury she asked how she should begin to prepare.

“And then he responded a few hours later with this very long email that detailed everything,” Choudhury said. “It made me feel like I was on the right track with my preparation, and from then on, I thought I could trust him whenever I emailed him with questions.”

The 71st Scripps National Spelling Bee includes 516 spellers from the United States, its territories and foreign countries such as Ghana.