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Houston Poetry Slam Qualifying Process

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Houston Poetry Slam
@ Poetry In ReVerse reading Series
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1. Vacancies on the Houston Slam Team MAY be referred to the next ranking individual or team contestant on the grand slam results list. Next, vacancies may be referred to poets on the semi-finals results list, and then finally the preliminary ranking list. The Slammaster reserves  the right to hold an Alternates Slam at any time to fill vacancies on the slam team or openings for IWPS or WOWPS.

The 2014 Houston Poetry Slam Qualifying Rules and FormatPoets, here's how to qualify to be a member of the Houston Slam Team for wherever Nationals is in 2015. Here are your options:

1. Individuals can compete for one of 4 spots on the team during a minimum six competition season. Grand Slam Finals will only be held to break ties. I don't recommend taking a 5th poet to Nationals because the Alternate usually causes drama and demands stage time at the expense of the team.

2.  Optionally, a minimum of two 4-poet teams or four 2 poet teams can compete during a minimum six competition season. BUT teams must be registered with me before the local season begins so I can schedule the bouts ahead of time. The top team of the season will form the Houston Slam Team. At least two teams need to be tied after the six competitions for a Grand Slam Final to occur. The top team of the Grand Slam Final will become the 2014 Houston Slam Team.

Here are the basic rules for ALL Poetry Slam Incorporated certified slam contestants:

1. Write and compete with your own poems up to three minutes long using: no props, no costumes, no musical accompaniment. At 3:10:01 you start losing .5 of a point for every 10 seconds you go over after 3:10.

2. You will be judged by 5 judges who may be picked out of the audience. The judges will score you Olympic style 0 to 10 points judging such criteria as performance, originality, and content.

Here are the local qualifying rules and the local format for the Houston Poetry Slam open season.

1. Regular season qualifying slams will occur with a minimum of two poets, two teams.

2. Two teams or two individuals require head -to-head match-ups in three rounds. Individual scores are cumulative. The first round of qualifying slams  is random order and A,B in succeeding rounds:
Round 1: A,B
Round 2: A,B
Round 3: A,B

3. Sixteen individual contestants will compete in 4 back-to-back bouts, 4 poets per bout in the 1st round. The highest scoring poets from each bout goes to the second round of two back-to-back bouts, 4 poets per bout, top 4 poets per bout go to the third and final round. Individual scores accumulate.

4. Placing 1st earns four ranking points. Placing 2nd earns two ranking points. Total accumulated scores determines lead within a ranking group.

5. A grand slam may be held to break ties.

The mission of Houston Poetry Slam is to promote poetry slam as one tool to help organize a nurturing, vibrant local poetry community. If you chose to form your own team, coach or captain your own team - beware of the self indulgent, egotistical poet. Their actions only serve their own personal advancement and maybe the advancement of their small cliques which can subvert concepts of team work and good sportsmanship.  The Slammaster is available for consultation, but the team you form is your own problem should problems occur. You've been warned.

The Slammaster reserves the right to clarify these rules throughout the season, make additions or changes as needed  - all at his discretion. If you wish to protest these rules or their alleged violation or manipulation, notify the Slammaster in writing. Your protest will be decided by the Slammaster. You may appeal decisions not to your liking to the Wrighter's Ink Executive Committee, and then if necessary to the Wrighter's Ink Board of Directors.

The 2007 - 2008 Super Slam Week started Tuesday January 22nd, 2008 and qualified several poets at venues that were enthusiastic for us to return next year. The winners of the 2008 Houston Slam Team Grand Slam Final held at Bohemeos on Saturday January 26th are as follows:

1. Camryn Barganier ($300 prize winner)
2. Brother Said (not elgible for prizes)
3. Byron Williams ($150 prize winner)
4. Larry Cortez ($100 prize winner)

Congratulations to the 2008 Houston Slam Team. Participates signed team contracts before the slam and agreed to receive their prizes in August after Nationals.

The alternate list for replacing vacancies on the Houston  Slam Team are as follows:

1.Black Blues

2. Marlon

3. The Black Lotus

4. Sal

This is Public Notice:

Just as Super Slam Week worked out like we planned, and we thought we had a dedicated team, and I was busy scheduling practices - two people dropped. They suddenly realized that being on a slam team and practicing every week was more responsibility than they had expected  - one reason why I and my board of directors decided to hold prizes until after a team returns from Nationals.

So here is the list of alternates. I'm trying to track you down here in Houston, but if you see your name on this list and you notify me before I hold an Alternates Slam - then you can take your rightful place on the team, and claim prizes.

The alternate list for replacing vacancies on the Houston  Slam Team are as follows:

1.Black Blues

2. Marlon

3. The Black Lotus

4. Sal

Teams are already selected?  Teams are already scheduling practice sessions?

Story of my life.  I never even heard the starting gun.


--- Quote from: Ransacked on February 11, 2008, 10:19:51 AM ---Teams are already selected?  Teams are already scheduling practice sessions?

Story of my life.  I never even heard the starting gun.

--- End quote ---


One very practical reason why we decided to do things so early (and as long as I'm Slammaster here we'll do it like this from now on) is because 2008 Nationals is in Madison, Wisconson. The past two years it was great to have Nationals about 100 miles away up in Austin. Although fundraising and team prep was still tough, and heres why:

Our sentimental tradition was to hold slams until April (poetry month) and have a slam off late April or early May. But we were always scrambling for money at the last minute and trying to balance fundraising time and practice time and jobs et al. April slamoffs is only three months before Nationals and that is just not enough time to raise money to transport and house five poets AND really, really practice. It never worked well for us.

I don't know about anybody else, but down here deep in Tejas we NEEd six moths to practice and raise a whole lot of money to go 1200 miles to Wisconson.


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