Mr. Daly talked at our table about how the news has changed throughout his career and laughed about the days where he had to go to a library to find information and, when he wrote, he came across as smart. He remembered how harsh editors were and ruthless their feedback came at him. In today's era of "everyone is an expert" (and "everyone can create a blog to report their facts") (I did not tell him about mine) Mike discussed that newsrooms have rapidly changed. He sits at his desk and googles what he needs instantaneously. At the podium last night he joked with the audience to buy newspapers. I joked back, "But can't I read it for free online?"
Either way, I knew I was in the presence of a very knowledgeable man, especially in regard to Bridgeport's history. He encouraged me to submit a 700 word essay to him immediately about my thoughts on teaching writing in urban schools. I said I was up for the challenge, but I need a few weeks to collect my thoughts. I also had tremendous respect for his zest for words and how he took notes of each presenter before he got up to speak, drawing attention to what they had to say as he introduced our kids who won.
Events like last evening take some time to process. Click here for a sample of Mike Daly's writing.