Silent Film Music, Celebrity Literary Trivia, and $2 Beer at Thursday’s Literary Upstart Grand Championship Super Final (TM)

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06/08/2011 12:12 PM |


Readers, writers, drinkers, New Yorkers: tomorrow night is the Grand Championship Super Final (TM) of this year’s Literary Upstart, our competitive short fiction reading series (brought to you by Harper Perennial and the New School), in which, as ever, our three semifinal winners and two wild cards will vie for publication in the L’s Summer Fiction Issue, as well as a giant novelty check like at a golf tournament.

But there’s so, so much more to this year’s Grand Championship Super Final (TM). Let us count the ways:

The venue: This year’s reading will be held at Galapagos Art Space, in Dumbo. Classy! Doors, as ever, at 7; reading once you’re good and settled in around the moat.

The reading: In an unprecedented twist, we’ve enlisted one of the city’s (and indeed, the world’s) premiere silent film accompanists, Ben Model of MoMA and Silent Clowns, to play along with the readers. His piano runs will make for more dynamic readings of the stories—and, probably, a lot of ad libbing about damsels being tied down to train tracks.

The trivia: Ladies and gentlemen, behold: New York City Literary Celebrity Literary Trivia (TM? TM. Yeah). Tomorrow, rather than hope that one of the people who shouts out all the answers from the audience accidentally ends up on stage, we’ve enlisted three local literati to answer questions about their forebears. So welcome the displays of uncanny literary knowledge or embarrassing and revealing lack of same, from: Rob Spillman, the editor of esteemed literary journal Tin House; Emma Straub, author of the novella Fly-Over State and the story collection Other People We Married; and James Boice, author of the acclaimed novel NoVa and the brand spanking new The Good and the Ghastly.

The swag: Galapagos tells us that everyone who attends will be given vouchers for $5 tickets for their upcoming Summer Solstice Burlesque/Cabaret. There’ll be books and magazines for some—possibly all!—of you. And, of course, the drink specials. We’re working with a mystery local brewery to provide you all with as many $2 beers as you can drink—or nearly as many, anyway—in the hopes you’ll stick around deep into the evening, after one distinguished young writer has tried to cover a bar tab with a giant novelty check.