Author Archives: Julie Dreier

Byronic to Ironic Hero Pride Presentation

Students brought their A-game to the Lions Pride event last Wednesday.

Mike Adams spoke about the popular HBO series Game of Thrones in a presentation that he calls “Byronic to Ironic Hero.” He came up with the idea based on his love of the genre combined with the suggestion of his advisor.

Dr. Hugh Davis asked Adams to present this literary analysis as a practice run for the upcoming Pop Culture Conference in August. “I thought that he would represent the English department well and I know that he’s planning to do a paper, and hopefully an entire panel on Game of Thrones this fall,” said Dr. Davis.

The seats were full until Adams began his introduction. “If any of you here are Game of Thrones fans – I will be talking a little bit about last Sunday’s episode – so if you have not yet seen it, you might want to exit the room,” he said. About one-third of the room stood up and left. The remaining students and faculty had a brief chuckle before the room went quiet and his video began.

As the audience watched the HBO trailer, Adams drew a diagram on the board that connected the remaining characters with the literary device of Jamie Lannister – each having an ongoing storyline with him.

“Does anyone here know what a Byronic Hero is?” Adams asked the crowd. Only two raised their hands. Both of which were English Professors. Mike explained the term “Byronic” to be like the character Manfred from Lord Byron’s piece “Manfred”.

After the literary device was established, he proceeded to showcase the irony in Jamie Lannister’s character profile. He spoke about the beginning of his fall when he pushed little Bren out of the window and touted “The things I do for love.”

After making this point, Adams made a few predictions for the end of the series, which will air its final episode on May 19th. He predicts that fans will be surprised to find out that the Byronic hero is the Dark Horse. “He’s the Dark Horse contender to become the Lord of Light and overall hero of the series. The obvious choice are the fan favorites, but as Faulkner famously says – “kill all your darlings”.”

Students and faculty were both surprised to hear his predictions and stayed after the presentation to ask questions. “I thought it was great. I never really thought about all of those connections, but he makes a good point. It will be exciting to watch the last episode and see if he [Adams] is right.” said sophomore Keaton Benfield.

Adams is planning to expand on the presentation to prepare for the annual Pop Culture Conference in North Carolina this year. The conference features scholars and students that publishing the journals “Studies in Popular Culture” and “Studies in American Culture.” They meet every year to present and discuss ideas about popular culture, American and world-wide culture. Adams will be part of an extensive panel writing about the Game of Thrones series from a student’s perspective.

“The Lions Pride Exhibition was a great starting point for me to get my feet wet,” Adams said. “I’m really excited to present on something that I am very passionate about and to connect with other GOT fans during this year’s Pop Culture Convention.”


Aha! I can see the light at the end of the tunnel! I was wondering if we were ever going to get to the end of this book. Chapter 12 is important for new journalists to understand because it is easy to get caught up in misunderstanding the law and what government societies can legally do. We all know about freedom of speech but we also tend to feel underpowered when it comes to authorities. For example, back in my dispatching days, we had a couple of high profile cases that landed national media attention. One was even broadcast across the globe due to the international sting one of our undercover officers unfolded. I was still fairly new to dispatch, so when all the mainstream media approached the door I was a little starstruck. That being said, I can tell you that they were relentless in asking as many questions as possible about the case. But when they went back to the press conference to speak with Chief Jones, some of the newer journalists didn’t ask anything. This is also a good example of the manipulation that can happen just by the situation. Seasoned journalists knew what to expect and what to ask and were by far ethical.

This book did a great job in summarizing points about beginning journalism. I especially appreciated the visual elements and simple formatting.


I think Filak’s chapter 4 should have been closer to the end of the book. Particularly after we read about the rules. How can you “break” them if you don’t yet know them? I guess the reason for placing it where he did was because he spoke about the structure of the story and the main sections to include. Perhaps just a title change would have been effective. It was a good review of the nut graph and to create a visual element in your reader’s mind.
Knights chapters 8 & 9 were probably the most helpful chapters for me so far in any of the readings because I struggle with cliches and trying to break the rules too much. I found it amusing that I was reading while petting and snuggling with my three oversized pooches, being that Knight makes mention of dogs. Then I was unhappy with the author when I read that he thinks jargon writers are “lazy” only to finally find myself yet again amused, at his explanation of the title “chair” since I often wondered why Joe would call himself that!


Again I find myself loving the visual elements of each chapter as well as the formatting that makes it easier to absorb. Most of chapter seven was a review for me – as dispatch reports follow most of the same rules, but I did find the sports reporting particularly interesting because I have never done it.
Chapter 8 reminded me of one of the first projects in Jackson’s Media Management class last semester. She asked us to go out and find anything interesting in the community to write about. I don’t think I had ever done that before, so it was interesting, to say the least. I did find the beats section very interesting but wonder if having that task as a professional might quickly become boring and stagnant? I guess if you were assigned to a beat that peaked your interests it would be fantastic.
The points about interviewing people for their personality profiles was well thought out, suggesting to include multiple interviews and gives the journalist several chances to really capture the essence of their piece.


Knight’s points about editorializing and using euphemisms are great reminders of things to consider while writing journalistically. I know that personally, I struggle with too much embellishing and too much creativity in a lot of my pieces. I typically have to tone them down a bit in order to be considered a journalistic piece so this chapter really helped. I have dog-eared a couple of the pages for future reference.
Filak’s chapter 2 was a great reminder that you have to really consider the whole story before digging into it. This is something I’m pretty good at. I think my creativity plays a great role here, in that I try to see the whole picture in my head and then execute the steps to make it happen. Comparing story writing to a recipe was a great analogy. I also enjoyed the photo from one of my favorite series, Mad Men at the beginning of the chapter!

Disaster Drills Down at Piedmont College

An explosion at Piedmont’s Swanson center has resulted in 28 casualties and 100 injuries. “Someone lost their husband and their father,” Emily Bran said as barrels of smoke poured out of the building on Wednesday. so far there are 28 confirmed casualties and at least 100 people injured from a blast that quickly turned into a fully engulfed fire that began in the Theater Department of the building.

Multiple agencies were dispatched to the scene and a request put into Georgia Emergency Management. “We got called out here to an explosion and a fire to assist the local EMA in any way possible,” Dave Shanks, coordinator for Homeland Security said. “Our response time was about 20 minutes.”

AirLife helicopters were landing and taking off in 15 minute intervals transporting multiple critical patients from the scene. “There were a lot of burns and trampled people from other people running out,” nurse Natalie Winters said. “We have a lot of blood trauma and several casualties.”

Chief Jim Andrews of Piedmont College addressed reporters. “Shortly after the fire was reported, we had an explosion also.” he said. “Several agencies are on the scene to assist.”

The call came into the [911] center this morning around 10 o’clock. It was reported that there was a fire and multiple injuries. As things progressed, we were requesting additional units as well as the coroner, mobile morgue, AirLife and power companies,” Lynn Smith, 911 EMS Supervisor said.

Several people were screaming and unsure of what was happening. “He’s brown, his name’s Rover. If you call his name, he’lll come up and lick your leg and that’s when you’ll know it’s him,” Kra Hawke said about her missing service dog – frantically searching amongst the commotion.

Agencies responding included the – City of Demorest Fire, Habersham Medical Center, Habersham EMS, Habersham Fire, Habersham Sheriff Canine Units, EMA Center for Homeland Security, District 2 Public Health and Habersham County Search & Rescue.

“I believe it is way too early for anyone to have an origin or a cause on the fire.” Dale Palmer said.


Again I am delighted with the format and readability of this book. Discussing current journalistic topics, like current yellow journalism or fake news, keeps it fresh and pertinent. So many of the books other classes use for study are outdated and deprecated. The simplicity of Knight’s writing makes the topic easier to understand.

Filak makes a good point about social media and that we are too engaged with it to ever let it go. The problem with so much of it is that relying on social media for news goes hand in hand with yellow journalism. Therefore, the two books make a great connection here.