New chapter in career of `disgrace'

 Editor Steve Davis and author Martin Stevenson toast Stevenson's new book, A Disgrace to the Profession. Picture: SCOTT GELSTON

And after about one million words in 20 years writing his ``In Black and White'' column for The Examiner, he has a book.

Titled A Disgrace to the Profession, Martin Stevenson has compiled 50 of his favourite musings into a compact book.

Editor Steve Davis, who encouraged Stevenson to publish a book, said they picked the columns that included plenty of humour.

``The book's title is derived from from a curious incident when Jonathan Shier, who was the former head of the ABC, said I was a disgrace to the profession,'' Stevenson, 70, said.

``I went to a hotel as a reporter and tried to get into an ABC conference.

``I couldn't get in because of the security guys and when Jonathan Shier chatted to me about it he said I could have reported on it and that there were no security people there and proceeded to call me a disgrace to the profession.''

Stevenson, who now runs his own bookstore in Launceston, said he was never hard up for a topic to discuss as there was always something or someone to become his column's linchpin.

``I do like to provoke . . . some people agree with you and some people don't,'' Stevenson said.

``There are very silly people around and all I can say is thank goodness for that.

``I think the reaction is the important bit but there is still a print media and still a place for people to make comments on the news and things that happen.''

Stevenson said his favourite column was about former Tasmanian premier Eric Reece and the need for an ``old-fashioned fighting spirit'' political leader in today's society.

A Disgrace To The Profession  is available at Launceston bookstores for $20.

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