Monday, March 29, 2010

Slam it Home at the Literary Saloon’s ‘My Hometown’ Story Slam on April 8th

Calling all stage-hungry Salooners: this month, we want you to entertain us! In honour of our special guest, prodigal Edmonton son Alan Reed, we’re hosting the My Hometown Story Slam. . .featuring YOU, live onstage!

In the grand tradition of Canadian letters, we have ripped off this idea from Americans—in particular a venerable story-slamming institution known as “The Moth”. They do it well, so we’re taking a page—well, pretty much all the pages—from their book. Here’s how it will work.

1) Prepare a 5 minute story around the theme “My Hometown”. Remember no notes, papers, or cheat sheets will be allowed on stage.

2) You’ll be judged on sticking to the five-minute time frame, sticking to the theme and telling a good story—one with a conflict and a resolution. Don’t meander, waffle, rant, do stand-up comedy or a ‘dramatic monologue’. Just be yourself, telling your story.

3) Download a few Moth podcasts or check out their website for a good sense of good storytelling.

4) Other Moth recommendations: Start in on the action (eg. “So there I was in the kitchen, screaming at my father that he had always loved the budgie more than me, when suddenly he clutched his chest. . .”), and steer clear of meandering endings. Your last line should be clear in your head before you start.

Eager participants will be asked to put their name in a bag before the Saloon begins, and we’ll choose around 5 performers for the evening. A cadre of serious, exacting (if not exactly ober) celebrity judges will rate the stories on a scale of 1-10 and at the end of the evening the winner will be awarded one of our always-fabulous Literary Saloon prizes.

But that’s not all! Participating in our story-themed evening will be:
  • Novelist Lynn Coady, whetting the audience’s appetite with a story from the wilds of her island home of Cape Breton.
  • And a big welcome home to former Edmontonian Alan Reed, debuting his new novel Isobel and Emile (“Young love, marionettes, and very short sentences.”) . . .fresh off the press from Coach House Books.
  • Plus. . . prizes! Sur-prises!

Door opens at 7 p.m. and the show begins at 8 p.m. Admission is $5. The ARTery is located at 9535 Jasper Avenue


Monday, March 8, 2010

March 11 Saloon - Edmonton authors read fresh YA fiction

The March Literary Saloon lineup is all about what the kids are reading these days....

Poly-platform writer (TV! radio! theatre! novels!) Marty Chan is best known for his hit mystery series for middle grade readers. The latest in the series is The Mystery of the Mad Science Teacher. He’ll be offering a sneak peek at his new book, The Mystery of the Cyber Bully, which launches this fall.

Curious about mitochondria? Jocelyn Brown, a member of the Saloon posse and seriously crafty gal, reads from her recently published — to mucho critical acclaim — The Mitochondrial Curiosities of Marcel 1 to 19. Will there be sock puppets? We’re just saying.

Thomas Wharton, the award-festooned author of Icefields, Salamandar, and Logogryph, is currently writing a trilogy of fantasy novels for younger readers, The Perilous Realm. He is also an assistant professor of English at the University of Alberta, so we’re happy to have him out on a school night.

And finally, back in the day, writers used sticks called “pens” to create their masterpiece works. Pen-ologist Shawna Lemay takes us through an exciting and prize-filled journey into inky territory.

Door opens at 7 p.m. and the show begins at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $5.

The ARTery is located at 9535 Jasper Avenue

Don't miss it! Write the date on your hand!

Future Saloon dates: April 8 and May 13.
(We also have an “Artery Literary Saloon” Facebook page.)