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Rules and FAQ's: Image


  • 5 minute story. After 5 minutes, there will be a penalty. After 7 minutes, there will be a gong

  • Sign up in person the evening of the event with the host table

  • No props

  • Story must be original, unpublished, and not a repeat

  • You can read from a script or tell a story

  • Names are drawn for order of storytelling

  • If there are more than 10 people sign up, the first 10 storytellers drawn from the hat will be able to compete. This is a lottery draw and there is no guarantee you will be able to tell your story if more than 10 people sign up. If you come a different month, the registration fee of $5 will be deferred. Reason for this rule: no pushing at 7 pm to get to the front of the line. People are allowed to sign up from 7 pm to 7:30 pm

  • No registrations are allowed after the show starts at 7:30 pm, even if less than 10 storytellers. This rule is to make it fair, as it is difficult to go first and later submissions mean the storytellers have an advantage.  

  • There are 5 random audience judges. We pick them at the beginning of the evening. 

  • Judges score 1 to 10, with one decimal point. The highest score and the lowest score are eliminated and the three middle numbers are added up. Judges give their scores after each storyteller.

  • Hat is passed at intermission. All donated money goes to the winner

  • The highest score of the evening wins the pot

  • The winners from each monthly event are eligible to compete in Slam Off held once a year. This finale usually happens in the spring.

  • NEW RULE: If during the regular season an individual wins twice, that person will then be asked to go first. If there are more than 10 story tellers, we will still draw 10 names (that evening will have 11 story tellers). If there are more than two people who have won Story Slam twice in one season: we will be in unknown territory and will figure it out.

  • Please remember this event is run by volunteers who love stories. There are no paid staff. All money for this event go back into the community.

Rules and FAQ's: Text


When do we sign up? 

Just show up at 9910 anytime between 7 and 7:30 pm to sign up the evening of the event. You will not be able to sign up after 7:30 pm when the show has started. First 10 people drawn from the event will be able to compete.

What kind of stories can I tell?

You can tell any sort of story...there is no censorship. It can be non-fiction or fiction or a bit of both. We do ask that stories do not contain hateful content and are respectful. 

Can I read from a script?

Yes, or off the top of your head. We just ask you do not use props,

Can I say whatever I want?

There is no censorship. We do ask that stories do not contain anything hateful or demeaning. 

How is Story Slam different from a Poetry Slam?

Stories should have a beginning, middle and end. There are some great resources out there on how to tell a great story. 

How long do I have?

You have 5 minutes to tell a story. After that there is a penalty. After 7 minutes there is a gong. It is hard to win if you go over with penalty points so practice ahead of time!

Where is the event?

In Edmonton, of course! 9910, the basement of the Common.

How much money can I win?

It depends on how much the audience donates to the hat!  There have been Story Slams that the winner has taken home over $300. On average, it usually is around $180.

How do I win?

You win by having the highest score at the end of the night. We add up the three middle scores and eliminate the highest and the lowest score. In case of a tie, we split the proceeds and declare you both winners.

What is the cost to attend?

It is free to attend but a suggest donation of $5 when we pass the hat. You can give more if you would like! Also, we ask that you support the establishment and enjoy a beverage or two!

How do I become a judge?

Edmonton Story Slam volunteers will ask people in the crowd to be judges at the beginning of the evening. We ask judges to be impartial and not friends with the contestants.

When do I donate my $5 to the hat?

We will have volunteers asking for donations at the mid-point of the evening during intermission. But if we miss you, don't be shy and come to the head table before the end of the evening to make a donation.

How do you decide who hosts?

The board asks seasoned storytellers to be hosts of Story Slam. If you are interested, please contact the board.

How long has Story Slam been going?

We started Story Slam in 2006, became a not for profit in 2008. 

Rules and FAQ's: Text
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