to Hold a 'Poetry Slam' at BookExpo America

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The oldest form of literature (verse) will meet one of the newest forms of bookselling ( at this year's BookExpo America (BEA).

On Saturday, May 31, from 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., at BEA, will present its first-ever "Poetry Slam," a contest for aspiring poets to read and have their work judged by their peers for a chance to have a poem published on and in Bookselling This Week.

"We hope that the Poetry Slam will increase awareness of poetry as both a written and spoken art form," said Len Vlahos, director of "And it will also allow everyone to collectively blow off some steam after a hard day on the trade floor." Beer, wine, and coffee will be served at the Poetry Slam.

All convention attendees are eligible to participate in the Poetry Slam, which will be held in the Los Angeles Convention Center. The contest is limited to 12 poets, and poems are limited to three minutes. A panel of three nationally known poets and two randomly chosen convention-goers will serve as judges. Each poem will be graded on a scale from 0 to 10, and the high and low score for each will be thrown out. A total score of 30 is the maximum any poem can get. A tie will be decided by the applause of the audience, as judged by the slam's organizers. Poets are not allowed to use props, music, or animal acts.

The winning poet will have his/her poem published on and in Bookselling This Week.

Those wishing to participate must sign up in advance of BookExpo America. To take part in the Poetry Slam, contact Len Vlahos at [email protected].