New Letters
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C.D. Wright: Past American Voice

We remember Arkansas native and former Rhode Island Poet Laureate C.D. Wright, who died suddenly in January 2016 at the height of her writing career. The MacArthur Fellow and National Book Critics Circle Award winner authored 17 books with tw...

Philip Lee Williams

In the second half of this interview with Philip Lee Williams, the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Georgia Writers Association, he discusses his most recent works of poetry, ...

Natasha Trethewey

This program features the second part of a conversation in front of an audience at the Hall Center for the Humanities at the University of Kansas with the Mississippi Poet Laureate, Natasha Trethewey. The 19th U.S. Poet Laureate (2012-14), she tal...

Judson Mitcham

Georgia State Poet Laureate Judson Mitcham talks about his psychology background and how his poetry career began with trying to write songs. He shares stories about some of the influential poets he's met along the way, including the late Richard H...

Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

Kansas Poet Laureate, 2009-2013, Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg is the author of multiple books of poetry and prose. Themes of openness resonate throughout her work, whether she's relating the tumultuous history of her laureateship in...

Feminist Poets: Past American Voices

This program pays tribute to the past American voices of feminist poets from the last century, who opened doors at publishing houses for the vast numbers of talented women writers today. Listen to excerpts from Pulitzer Prize winne...

Jayne Anne Phillips

As part of the Writers at Work series at the Kansas City Public Library, Jayne Anne Phillips reads from her fifth novel, Quiet Dell...

Kai Wright

Kai Wright, named the 2016 Features Editor of The Nation, discusses his 2009 anthology,...

Natasha Trethewey

In the first part of this interview, Mississippi Poet Laureate (2012-16), Natasha Trethewey talks about her work that deals with history, racism, and family, including her first creative non-fiction book, ...

The Symphony Poets

The Symphony is a group of African-American poets originally comprised of Reginald Dwayne Betts (shown),...

Antonya Nelson

The author of eleven books of short stories and novels, Antonya Nelson appears as UMKC's 2015 Cockefair Chair Writer-in-Residence at the Kansas City Public Library. She talks about her most recent books: the novel ...

Ben Lerner

One of two creative writers chosen as a 2105 MacArthur "Genius" Fellow, Ben Lerner talks about his first two books of poetry, ...

Ellen Bryant Voigt

A 2015 MacArthur "Genius" Fellow, Ellen Bryant Voigt talks with fellow poet and professor, Michelle Boisseau, about her eighth book, ...

Dean Young

With the December 2015 release of Shock By Shock, Dean Young's first book of all new poems since his 2011 ...

In the Beginning

New Letters on the Air explores the spark that ignites writers' imaginations. Pulitzer Prize winners Tony Kushner (shown), Jane Smiley,...

Thomas Fox Averill

A longtime resident of Kansas and professor at Washburn University, Thomas Fox Averill lets his numerous interests and passion for research guide his writing of "flyover fiction." His 2001 novel...

Philip Lee Williams

The author of 19 books of fiction, poetry, and non-fiction, Philip Lee Williams’ honors include the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Georgia Writers Association. In this interview at WUGA in Athens, Georgia, he talks about some of hi...

Chanukah Tales

Poet Marilyn Kallet reads from her book, One for Each Night: Chanukah...

Greg Field and Denise Low

Drawing upon his Native American heritage, poet Greg Field (shown) reads from his 2014 book of poetry, Black Heart, and reveals the insp...

Linda Rodriguez

Linda Rodriguez is a self-proclaimed "feminist, activist, and unashamed liberal," who has now given those attributes to Skeet Bannion, the Native American heroine of her mystery novels. Rodriguez, who is also a poet and part Cherokee, talks about ...

Gerald Vizenor

The author of more than 40 books of poetry, fiction, essays and criticism, Gerald Vizenor was raised on the White Earth Reservation in Minnesota and went into the army at age 18. While in Japan, he discovered a new appreciation of his native Anish...

Kwame Dawes

Born in Ghana and raised in Jamaica, Kwame Dawes has written poetry, plays, fiction, a documentary and an accompanying Emmy-win...

Michael Nava

An attorney for the California Supreme Court by day, Michael Nava is the author of seven novels in the Henry Rios mystery series, six of which won the Lambda Literary Awards for Gay Men's Mystery books. His 2014 novel,...

Marjorie Agosín

The author of the 2015 International Latino Book Award-winning young adult novel, I Lived on Butterfly Hill, Marjorie ...

Junot Díaz

With nearly a decade between his first collection, Drown and his follow-up novel...

Nikki Giovanni

With a long writing career that stretches back to the 1960s and the Black Art Movement, Nikki Giovanni has nearly three dozen books of poetry, fiction, essays, memoir, and children's stories with numerous honors, including the American Book Award ...

Kansas City Literary Events

Naomi Shihab Nye at the National Storytelling Conference

Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Kansas City, Mo.

News

Tracy K. Smith has been named the next U.S. Poet Laureate!

Hear poetry from her Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Life on Mars, on the New Letters on the Air half-hour show or a short excerpt on KCUR before she was in Kansas City last year. Find out more about our new ambassador for poetry from NPR.

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Clarion Awards Selection CD Special

Jamaica KincaidJim ShepardGloria Vando & Anika ParisLuis Alberto Urrea, and Alex George, normally $7.99 per episode, this cd collection comes with over $15.00 in savings. Downloads of these programs have been reduced and are available through our archives.