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Magic spells: Greenpoint bookstore to host fantasy-themed spelling bee - Brooklyn Paper

Magic spells: Greenpoint bookstore to host fantasy-themed spelling bee

Spelling casters: Word bookstore employees Emily Pullen, left, and Jaye Bartell study up for the “Game of Words” spelling bee.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

You shall not pass — if you cannot spell, that is.

Greenpoint’s Word bookstore is hosting a spelling bee where contestants must spell difficult science fiction and fantasy-themed terms or meet their maker — figuratively, of course. The April 5 contest promises to be an impressive battle of tongues due to the formidable languages that these fandoms boast, according to the bee’s facilitator.

“In terms of the words, sci-fi and fantasy are two of the most creative genres for new, interesting, and wonderfully challenging words,” said Geoffrey Golia, the event’s emcee.

“A Game of Words: You Spell or You Die!” will be divided into epic fantasy and sci-fi rounds, boasting lexicons from famed books,

TV shows, and films such as George R. R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire,” “Doctor Who,” and “Star Wars.” Golia, who also organizes the Williamsburg bar trivia night “A Trivia of Ice and Fire” based on Martin’s fantasy series, will oversee 10 contestants in each preliminary round. Two finalists will then face off in hopes of attaining the crown — as well as some books donated by Golia himself.

At last year’s inaugural fandom-themed bee, contestants were asked to spell terms such as “morsmordre,” the name for the spell used to conjure the skull-and-serpent Darth Mark sign in J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter,” as well as “hooloovoo,” a term from Douglas Adams’s “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” that refers to a super-intelligent shade of blue. Golia would not reveal any of this year’s words, but promised that fans will not be disappointed.

“You’ll see words that represent beloved and notorious characters, cool and dangerous weapons, magical creatures and places, alien substances, and fictional-but-fascinating concepts,” he said.

“A Game of Words: You Spell or You Die!” at Word Bookstore [126 Franklin St. between Milton and Noble streets in Greenpoint, (718) 383–0096, www.wordbrooklyn.com]. April 5 at 5 pm. Free. Email brooklyn@wordbookstores.com to sign up.

Reach reporter Megan Riesz at mriesz@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505. Follow her on Twitter @meganriesz.

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