THE INS & OUTS OF SLAMMING A STORY
Story Slams have become popular with tellers all over the country whose ambition is to tell original, true-to-life tales and vie for a coveted Best Teller title.
The Patchwork slam welcomes outrageous, thought-provoking, and adventurous personal-ish tales. We believe "to each his own;" story selection is a matter of personal preference. However, keep in mind that content and expression should be family-friendly, and the story must connect with the overall theme: Stories of Saints and Sinners.
This is how a slam works:
For the purpose of regulating the event, hopeful participants enter a drawing where names are randomly selected to tell a story. Tellers are limited to a rigid time-frame – here 5 minutes, and props and notes are strictly forbidden (as if we could see).
Judges evaluate tellers’ performances and stories – a process that can occur in several ways. For instance, three judges might be randomly chosen to score contestants, or the entire audience might score and select the winner or winners. Moreover, multiple categories might be created and filled when it comes to winner-selection.
For our slam, we're simply looking at: content and presentation. Needless to say, the participant with the highest score wins the title for a job well done, a tale well told. How that will be done is up in the air for this virtual platform; however, something akin to an applause meter will be used at the end. We're looking into options that will make this fun and not cut-throat competition.
Timing is critical. Beware anyone who dares to cross the five minute mark!
—based on an excerpt by Denise McCormack, editor of Story Art: A Magazine for Storytellers. Issue: April, May, June 2014
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