April 1, 2008

a new reality show

I've seen on Writer Beware various attempts at launching reality shows involving authors. But these all never got legs for two reasons:

First, no one wants to watch amateur writers working on novels. I mean, who really wants to watch a bunch of people doing laundry, blogging funny-only-to-them photos of their cats, and playing solitaire or tetris when they should be writing? By this I mean to say, the concept was flawed.

Second, the people trying to launch these are wannabes who have no clout in TV.

Now the producers of American Idol have come up with a concept that might have some merit and which could help improve the creative writing skills of American children in the process. It's called American Poet, and it involves contestants writing and reciting that poetry. Contestants will be judged not only on their recital performance but on the literary quality of their poems, the appropriateness to each week's theme, and appeal to a "young adult" audience (no specifics on what that means yet, exactly).

Another twist is that in this YouTube era, rather than have contestants line up in stadiums, auditions will be via home video submitted to the judging panel. The actual finals (top six, each week one poet voted off by phone-in votes) will be televised on Fox, but the audition shows will be only on line through YouTube.

Anyone who knows me already knows that I'm hooked on American Idol. I'm not sure I'll go for this show, but I'll at least give it a shot when the first shows air. They're putting it on in September in a back-to-school atmosphere, and they'll be doing a tour of selected top high schools to profile along the way.

The winner gets two prizes: A publishing contract to publish a book of their poetry, and a $50,000 donation to the school of their choice.

What do you think? Will you give it a look when it comes on in September?


Blogless Troll said...

Ha! Good one, Pete. The logo really sells it.

bluesugarpoet said...

Yeah, I tried out for that show. Didn't make it past the initial round. They said I wasn't "edgy" enough.


JaneyV said...

I'd watch it!

Your description of how I spend my day is a bit scarily close to the bone. Either you're stalking me or I'm a walkin', breathin' stereotype!

Yeah I know it's the latter! :(

Victoria Strauss said...

Co-sponsored by the International Library of Poetry.

You had me going for a minute--I was all excited to find another silly author reality show to add to my collection.

PJD said...

Victoria, thanks for stopping by (a celebrity visit! to my blog! rare and delightful!). Your comment made my day. I had you in mind as I composed it.