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Tampa, Ep. 1

March 10, 2018 — Literary Death Match's AWP Spectacular at the Vaughn Center — co-hosted by University of Tampa MFA, and co-presented by Burrow Press and Painted Bride Quarterly  — was a revelation that saw Kazim Ali strive to victory in a nip-and-tuck Literary Spelling Bee III finale to win Ali the LDM Tampe, Ep. 1 crown and literary immortality to go with it.

What is Literary Death Match? Part literary event, part comedy show, part game show, Literary Death Match brings together four of today’s finest writers to compete in an edge-of-your-seat read-off critiqued by three celebrity judges, and concluded by a slapstick showdown to decide the ultimate champion.

Here's the full lineup from the night:

Literary Merit: Glory Edim, founder of the Brooklyn-based book club and digital platform, Well-Read Black Girl, and Publishing Outreach Specialist at Kickstarter
Alissa Nutting, author of award-winning short-story collection, Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls. She is a creative writing and English literature assistant professor at John Carroll University
Abraham Smith, author of four poetry collections: AshagalomancyOnly Jesus Could Icefish in SummerHank, and Whim Man Mammon

Round 1:
Beth Ann Fennelly
, Poet Laureate of Mississippi, a regular in the Best American Poetry Anthology and author of poetry books: Open HouseTender Hooks and Unmentionables

* Adrian Matejka, Poet Laureate of Indiana, award-winning author of four poetry collections: The Devil’s GardenMixologyThe Big Smoke and Map to the Stars

Round 2:
* Sandra Beasley, author of three poetry collections and a memoir; she lives in Washington D.C., and teaches with the University of Tampa low-residency MFA program
* Kazim Ali
, author of three books of poetry, including The Far Mosque, and winner of the Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council

Hosted by LDM creator Adrian Todd Zuniga. Produced by Taylor Anhalt