Public Forum on News Media in Tampa Tonight; Dexter Author Jeff Lindsay Down the Street
I gotta say, the Taser guy story hit me where I live.
Tonight, at 7 p.m., I'm going to be moderating a public forum on bealf of the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists at the University of Tampa's Plant Hall on news coverage and the community. I'll be directing questions to editors from all the top media outlets in town: the St. Petersburg Times. Tampa Tribune, WUSF radio, Creative Loafing, WFLA-Ch. 8, WTSP-Ch. 10, WTVT-Ch. 13 and WFTS-Ch. 28 (only Bay News 9 among the big news outlets blew us off). After my short Q&A, we plan on taking questions from the crowd; admission is free and open to all.
But now Andrew Meyer's got me scared. Here's a guy who walked into a public forum, talked past his allotted time and wouldn't give up the microphone. When it was turned off and police tried to escort him out of the building, he physically resisted them. (His cries of "Don't tase me bro!" were featured in the New York Times, Miami Herald and the Washington Post; expect a YouTube-based music video on the phrase before long) See how the Gainesville Sun benefitted from having a freelancer onsite to video it all here.
Now people are saying the organizers suppressed his free speech rights. What if we get another Taser-dude in Tampa? Can we ask police to remove him without getting accused of robbing his free speech?
At the same time, at Inkwood books on Armenia Ave. in Tampa, will be a public forum of a different sort, featuring Dexter author Jeff Lindsay talking about his legendary character -- a serial killer who murders other killers.
For Monday's Floridian article on Lindsay, I drove down to his Cape Coral home and hung out for a few hours, stepping on this boat, the Dexter-Us. and meeting his wife Hilary Hemingway, neice of the legendary author.
What I couldn't fit in the piece, was Lindsay's story about how he writes -- essentially getting up so early in the morning, that his conscious brain hasn't fully kicked in.
"I think part of it is my writing technique is … as I say, I’m acting it but most of the stuff I’m doing really early in the morning before I’m actually awake. So it’s just my subconscious, and I’ve found that, you know, I can get out five or 10 pages real early in the morning and then come back later in the day and whip it into shape, and it works better that way. If I was to go in right now, wide awake, and try to write, most likely what would happen is that I would have the critic sitting in the chair with me and going, you know, you did that in the last book, oh, that’s stupid, can’t you think of anything better?"
So, if you're a media geek in the Tampa Bay area, you've got your pick of two compelling events tonight. Just be nice and respect the rules for discussion. I don't want to have to Tase you bro.