Thursday, June 7, 2012

Literary Death Match

Literary Death Match #7 - Twin Cities

Last night I attended the 7th Literary Death Match held in the Twin Cities at Nomad's World Pub in Minneapolis.  I had no idea what to expect but I figured an event that featured authors, reading, all while drinking with literate book nerds like myself was the perfect way to kick off the summer.  I dragged my friend Gail along for the fun.

So here is what happens.  There are three author judges on stage, 4 authors competing in the death match.  There are two rounds and two authors are eliminated.  The two remaining authors participate in a death match with audience participation.  It is really quite fun and I plan on attending again.

Let me introduce you to the judges.

Literary Merit:  Marlon James
author of The Book of Night Women and John Crow's Devil.

Performance:  Danno Klonowski is a cartoonist and he drew some amazing artwork of each author. He writes comic books called staplegenius.

Intangibles:  Dennis Cass former writer for the New York Times.  He was hilarious.  He is trying to reinvent himself by writing a sci-fi novel.

The Readers:

Round 1:  First up was poet Juliet Patterson competing against young adult author Pete Hautman.
Juliet read a 6 minute poem about love and had a call and response with the audience.  Pete read an excerpt from his young adult novel Invisible.  I actually read this book a few years ago.
After they read, the judges had time to critique each author and then declared a winner for the round and the winner was:  Pete Hautman

Juliet Patterson has published two books of poetry:  The Truant Lover and Threnody.  Her poems are published widely in magazines.

Pete Hautman has written numerous books including Godless and Invisible.  He has won the Minnesota Book Award numerous times and has also been awarded the National Book Award for his book Godless.

Round 2:  Next up was poet and performer Jeffrey Skemp competing against the creative force and facebook's Goth Mom, Stephanie Wilbur Ash.   Stephanie writes for the Mpls St. Paul magazine. Jeff has an amazing voice and on stage presence.  He was accompanied by a guitarist.  Stephanie came on stage with a long flowing pink coat and the Prairie Fire Lady Choir.  She sang, she read, and it was great.  Again the judges critiqued each author and then declared a winner for the round and the winner was:  Stephanie Wilbur Ash.

Jeffrey Skemp is a member of the Bosso Poetry Company and his debut poetry+music album was released in the Spring of 2011.

Stephanie Wilbur Ash is Goth Mom on Facebook.  She edits Juicebox for families from the Mpls St.Paul Magazine.  She is also a part of the Electric Arc radio show.

Finale:  I can't tell you what happens because I want you to go and find out for yourself.  They use 6 audience members and declare a champion.  The champion of last night's Literary Death Match was Stephanie Wilbur Ash!

You can find out more by checking out the Literary Death Match website or following on Twitter @litdeathmatch.