Monday, May 20, 2013

Roland Lazenby Teacher at 2nd Writers Series Class Wednesday

Me (left) with Roland when he picked up his Perry F. Kendig writing award.
Roland Lazenby, who has written nearly 60 books, mostly biography and sports, is the guest teacher Wednesday at Community High School for the second session of the Writers Series, sponsored by the Roanoke Regional Writers Conference. Gametime is 6:30 p.m. and the class is in the auditorium (enter the left-hand door on the front of the school).

Roland's next book may be his biggest: Black Jesus, a biography of basketball player Michael Jordan. It comes on the heels of his popular Jerry West, a biography of the Los Angeles Lakers star and executive. I've read a significant portion of Black Jesus (as well as a number of Roland's other books) and I can assure you that this is not just a sports book. It is a slice of the American pie and one most of you are not familiar with. Roland's chapters on Jordan's family history in Eastern North Carolina are riveting. His grandfather, especially, is a towering character.

Roland, who has taught journalism at the college level (Tech and Radford) for a number of years, will talk about organizing and researching a biography and he'll take your questions. He has been one of the anchors at the Writers Conference annually and journalist Beth Macy, who has a book coming out soon on the furniture industry, says his encouragement led her to write the book. Roland is one of the most generous and caring writers I know, taking time with people who are inexperienced or who need to get over a writers' hump.

Join us. It's free (we pass a hat to pay expenses) and you'll enjoy it. There is plenty of parking. Bring your own beverage (nothing alcoholic, please)..

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