At Literary Death Match, you don't have to choose between great writing and great improv. The live show pits two sets of budding writers against one another in front of a panel of three celebrity judges, usually prominent comedians. The writers perform head-to-head, seven-minute readings of their work, then face off in a trivia competition to determine the winner. The uproarious atmosphere has drawn some major writers, including Chuck Palahniuk, Neil Gaiman and Jennifer Egan, and some major comedian judges, such as David Cross, Molly Shannon, Diablo Cody and Kumail Nanjiani. Host Adrian Todd Zuniga is himself a hilarious master ringleader, and he's been doing Literary Death Match in cities across the world for nearly 10 years. In addition to its regular venue, Largo, there's a free annual event at the Hammer Museum.
Correction: This piece originally said that there are three sets of writers. There are actually two.