Jerry Bledsoe, "Do-Good Boy"
Jerry Bledsoe, Do-Good Boy
Saturday, March 9, 7pm
In 1960, at age 18, future bestselling author Jerry Bledsoe ("Bitter Blood" & "The Angel Doll") told an Army recruiter that he wanted to be an artist. This was his lucky day, the recruiter informed him. The Army had the best art school in the world. But after being sworn in, Bledsoe was pulled aside by a major and informed that no Army art school existed. He was being assigned instead to Information School.
Although Bledsoe, who had flunked high school English for failure to write book reports and term papers, had no idea what this unexpected decision entailed, it would set the direction for the rest of his life.
Bledsoe limits this warm, deeply personal and often humorous memoir to the turbulent '60s, which he began as a psychological warfare writer in the early stages of the Vietnam War. His Army experiences led him to become a newspaper reporter and columnist, thrusting him into the major stories of the decade and leading him to meet and write about hosts of remarkable and engaging people, including a relatively unknown musician named Jimi Hendrix who was opening for the Monkees, comedy legend Brother Dave Gardner, and civil rights leader Ben Elton Cox.
From moments of true Catch-22 absurdities in the Army to historic events of the civil rights movement, "Do-Good Boy" gives its readers an insider's view as a young author discovers his calling.
Jerry Bledsoe was born in Danville, VA, in 1941, and grew up in Thomasville, N.C. After three years in the Army he became a newspaper reporter and for more than 20 years was a feature columnist in Greensboro and Charlotte. He was a contributing editor to Esquire when he began writing books. His seventh book, Bitter Blood, became a New York Times #1 bestseller and was made into a CBS mini-series. He and his wife, Linda, live near Asheboro, NC.