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NYC, Ep. 22

January 21, 2010—An inspired LDM NYC, Ep. 22 was rife with brilliance at New York City's Bowery Poetry Club, as SWEET: Actors Reading Writers rep Nelly Reifler narrowly outshone New York Tyrant rep Christopher Kennedy in an a awards acceptance speech-off that made her the Literary Death Match Champion. 

But before the LDM medal had been shown the night started with an opening round that featured Reifler against Daniel Nester (representing Soft Skull Press). Reifler was a perfect opener, instantly grabbing the audience's attention, before Nester stepped up to read about the licking of feet, amongst other topics. 

Following both readers, the mic was handed over to the the first-ever all-lady all-star judging triothat featured Paris Review managing editor Caitlin Roper, musicianess extraordinaire Emily Zuzik, and stellar scribe Jess Grose. While the judges agreed that Nester had the shock-and-awe, they thought Reifler's tight prose and sharp reading was a tad better, selecting her as the nights’ first finalist. 

After a boozy intermission, Round 2 began with Kennedy leading off against Michael Atkinson (Hemingway Deadlights, representing The Believer). Kennedy read a series of short, love-based poems that had the audience surprised and giggling, followed by Atkinson who wowed with a startling excerpt from his book about Hemingway-as-detective. 

Once again, the judges were spotlighted, slightly favoring Kennedy's poem about a man who tries to bake his own head to please a woman, over Atkinson's hard-boiled well-told tale. Kennedy, then, was the announced as the night's second finalist.  

Then came the finale, in which both Reifler and Kennedy were asked to give an acceptance speech for the awards they won — Reifler for the Literary Colouring Book of the Year; Kennedy for the Literary Sudoku Novel of the Year. Introduced by former winners D.W. Lichtenberg and Ropert Lopez, Reifler reeled off her 40-seconds-or-less in smart fashion before Kennedy stepped up and thanked his way to the time limit (videos of both soon to come). Three volunteer judges were on hand to vote on their favorite, with Reifler coming out victorious, and claiming Literary Death Match immortality. 

Reader Comments (2)

Who was the agent on stage? I failed to catch her name.

January 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterD&O

Erin Hosier!

January 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTodd Zuniga

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