My First 60+ Articles in my Hometown:Tyler, Texas…by JD Meyer

KLTV in your community & PineyWoodsLive

Oh My News of South Korea advised its citizen journalists or netizens to submit articles to their hometown site when the format changed to forum from global e-newspaper. I’ve been following that advice mainly through my 47 articles at the local ABC affiliate: KLTV in your community ,starting in January 2011. Here’s my bio and links to nine articles at KLTV: KLTV in your community has 15 communities, including the four quadrants of Tyler. I’ve written 16 articles for The Daily You, now Piney Woods Live, starting in May 2010. Finally, I’ve had three letters to the editor published at the Tyler Paper.

Coincidentally, my first article for KLTV was about Tyler’s Martin Luther King Parade/Lecture in 2011, and my most successful article anywhere was with Oh My News about the same topic in 2010.

My favorite feature of KLTV in your community is that you can edit your published work. Sometimes an acquaintance will respond to a request to edit your account of his/her speech. Unfortunately, KLTV often has a broken link problem.

Since I was a teacher, Education gets my attention quite a bit. Tyler has the annual Great Decisions program in the downtown library, in which US foreign policy is analyzed. This occurs in late winter-early spring–eight speeches, usually by professors. My account of the Indonesia lecture actually got re-tweeted by an Indonesian site! Nine of my KLTV articles are about Great Decisions programs. I wrote two articles about UT-Tyler’s Global Awareness through Education (GATE) program and their new charter school, the Ingenuity School for them too.

Since I’m disabled with COPD, I generally attend monthly Better Breather luncheons at one of the local hospitals and often write about the speech–some medical professional talking about issues relevant to those with bad lungs or a bad heart. You can find a COPD Diet article at my KLTV site that was edited by a dietician.

Veterans issues are important to me since I was in the Disabled American Veterans Auxiliary (DAVA). Two articles were accounts of speeches at the DAV/DAVA District conference, including one by a major general.

The bus route and central transfer changes were the topic of two articles. Taquerias, traditional Mexican fast-food, is my favorite food and a recurring topic in my writing. Once I wrote to the bus riders not to worry since they were still near La Michoacana at the new central transfer point. is a leading small Hispanic grocery store, so those two issues merged. Most articles fall in a variety of categories. A recent article for PineyWoodsLive was a guide to taquerias and well-illustrated through flickr photos (Attribution Only copyright) connected by hyperlinks.

The purposes of writing are to persuade, inform, and entertain–according to John Langan, the leading author in Developmental English and Reading. Therefore, I write about pure entertainment at times, such as Juneteenth Parades on the Northside and a Meet the Artist Night Downtown that also included a rock covers band and a buffet. The latter event may answer the question, “What would Richard Florida Do?” Dr. Florida is the University of Toronto business and creativity prof who explains that the four T’s are keys to thriving urban areas: talent, technology, tolerance, and territorial assets. Juneteenth–celebrated on June 19th and the closest previous Saturday morning–honors that day in 1865 when US troops came to Galveston, Texas, announced the Civil War was over, and the slaves were freed. Actually, the freeing of the slaves was previously announced during the peak of the Civil War two years earlier. News gets my attention such as the effects of the stimulus project on Smith County, Occupy Tyler, and some Democrat club meetings.

My two most successful local articles may have been on urban gardens and a graduate program at the University of Texas at Austin. My urban vegetable gardens started by interviewing a middle school science teacher about raised bed gardening, and I ended up getting between 15–20 links to websites. You’ll notice that I have a copy at my website. . Once I wrote about Intellectual Entrepreneurship at University of Texas at Austin, as a way to generate more money per student– a concern of Tyler’s Industry Growth Initiative (IGI). This article was reprinted in Austin and even Toronto, the home of Dr. Richard Florida, author of The Rise of the Creative Class.


Hopefully, this summary has given enough detail for the reader to ascertain my typical story subjects. Citizen journalism has been enough fun for me to want to look into second career possibilities. Few things are more fun than to express something in a way that’s accurate and humorous at the same time, yet it’s a different style of writing from the composition style work I did as a teacher.


Hunger for Love

Hunger for Love on Saturday Morning, by J.D. Meyer

I’ve become a recent fan of Hunger for Love, which meets literally under that part of Gentry that is neither west nor east but parallel to Valentine Street—the same street where Gateway to Hope daytime homeless resource center is located. Hunger for Love meets on Saturday morning and is not to be confused with Church Under the Bridge–a service that meets on Sunday morning at 10:30. Both are part of Mission Tyler: One Love Revolution. Jacksonville and Texarkana also have a Church Under the Bridge program.
I talked with Mark Eslicker, one of the main coordinators for Mission Tyler. Then Mark edited my article for me two weeks later. Mission Tyler expanded an earlier project. Mark’s son, Jason, started “Hunger for Love” with two classmates while they were still attending Brook Hill School in Bullard back in May 2011. At that time, the event was held downtown and only fed about 17-20 people. I recall eating there during the Occupy Tyler event back in October 2011. Hunger for Love moved to their current location in December 2011.
Now several churches have unified to make this project really major. They feed 150 weekly. The churches include Central Baptist, Colonial Hills Baptist, Day Spring United Methodist, Cowboy Church, Faith Community, First Methodist of Noonday, Eternal Hope Ministries, and Faith Central. Occasionally, churches from Canton and Winona have visited to help. The Jesus Closet is a place to donate clothes–something I’ve done twice-informal and formal clothes–since I’m thirty pounds heavier in my Medicaid era. Their small van is located west of the serving area at Hunger for Love.
The festivities begin with a worship service, story time, and maybe a testimony. There is always some singing and guitar playing. Once several of us took turns telling for what we were thankful. I mentioned my COPD health improvements, amazement on being able to walk for 30 minutes, and read a former student’s essay on what she was thankful for–a Thanksgiving assignment in my last semester of teaching.
The breakfast is really good food and always has a unique twist on the main dish. On August 17 we had a mix of hash browns with cheese and ground meat, together with strawberry yogurt, fruit of your choice (banana, apple, or orange), and a granola bar-not generic! I bring Louisiana hot sauce in my backpack side pocket not only to share, but because I really need hot sauce on my main course. Then we get a sack lunch to go that always includes a sandwich, chips, and crackers or a sweet roll. Bagels have also been available the last two weeks.
Nowadays, Jason Eslicker rode his bike with an International Justice Mission group from Seattle, Washington to Portland, Oregon—a distance of 500 miles. That group calls attention to slavery worldwide. Jason recently started at Tyler Junior College, actually to finish high school. He has a very proud dad.
Another good thing about Hunger for Love, or Brunch Under the Bridge as I call it, is that you’re almost guaranteed to see an old friend or acquaintance–assuming you’re fairly poor. Everyone is really friendly, whether you’ve met them previously or not. You can get coffee before the brunch while the religious program is going on. Hunger for Love has achieved something remarkable–a type of BScene program for the poor with a religious underpinning. Get there about 9:30-9:45; it’s over by 10:50.