New Letters on the Air

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Listening to New Letters on the Air is like eavesdropping on intimate conversations with favorite writers who reveal secrets about their creative methods, read a few favorite passages, and inspire the listener's imagination.

NEW LETTERS ON THE AIR is a weekly half-hour show that has been entertaining and informing audiences about contemporary writers and literature since 1977. Each week, the program focuses on a writer of poetry, fiction or essays, either in an intimate interview or in a public reading before an audience. Post-produced with narrative and music, NEW LETTERS ON THE AIR gives insight into the creative writing process and the universal stories that writers tell.

Each show is self-contained and undated, except for the occasional holiday or theme related program. 30- and 60-second produced promos are provided weekly on the PRSS promo satellite feeds and on Content Depot. Written promos are posted weekly on the DACS along with the timings and cues. Other distribution methods are available.

Though educational, NEW LETTERS ON THE AIR is not pedantic, and the conversation is often filled with laughter as authors discuss and read from their books. Our archive programs contain many Nobel Laureates, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winners, along with recipients of other major literary awards. Recent guests include poets Sherman Alexie, Naomi Shihab Nye, Billy Collins, and Alicia Ostriker; dramatists August Wilson, Suzan-Lori Parks, and Tony Kushner; essayists Meghan Daum, Susan Orlean, and David Sedaris; fiction writers Richard Russo, Jane Smiley, and Ha Jin. The program also features less-familiar but remarkable writers whose work and contributions are equally engaging.

"Most people have a creative streak, whether they're interested in writing or not," says Angela Elam, host of NEW LETTERS ON THE AIR. "I hope by exploring the writer's process and hearing work that captures the essence of our lives, the program will inspire listeners to do something creative in their own way."

Series

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5 Pieces

NOTE: ALL EPISODES CAN STAND ALONE; NO OBLIGATION TO RUN THE ENTIRE SERIES. This five-episode series of one-hour programs features 17 of the men and women who have served as United States Poet Laureates over the past four decades, from the late Howard Nemerov (1963-64) to Donald Hall (beginning 2006). These conversations and readings of poetry vary from humorous to heavy, but are always thought-provoking, and are perfect for National Poetry Month in April, though they can be used anytime.


Pieces

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Multi-award-winning poet and MacArthur fellow, Terrance Hayes, reads from his fifth book, HOW TO BE DRAWN, winner of the 2016 NAACP Image Award for...

Bought by WNJR


  • Added: Oct 10, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 1
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NEW LETTERS ON THE AIR continues National Hispanic Heritage Month with Joaquín Zihuatanejo, whose poetry book, ARSONIST, has just been released. He...

  • Added: Oct 03, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
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NEW LETTERS ON THE AIR continues National Hispanic Heritage Month with a look back at Latina author Sandra Cisneros, who received the National Med...

Bought by WNJR, KRZA, XRAY.fm, KHNS, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio and more


  • Added: Sep 26, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 6
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NEW LETTERS ON THE AIR begins the celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month with the 2018 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize winner, Martín Espada. In t...

Bought by WNJR


  • Added: Sep 17, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 1
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We celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month with Martin Espada's triple award-winning collection, THE TROUBLE BALL. In this public reading for Pa...

Bought by WNJR and XRAY.fm


  • Added: Sep 17, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 2
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Diane Williams, a three-time winner of the Pushcart Prize for Fiction is the author of eight books, and the editor of the acclaimed literary journa...

Bought by WNJR and WMUU-LP


  • Added: Sep 10, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 2
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For Labor Day weekend, listen to Robert Stewart, the St. Louis born writer and editor of NEW LETTERS magazine, as he talks about his creative proce...

Bought by WNJR


  • Added: Aug 31, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 1
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In 2006, Robin Robertson's collection, SWITHERING, won the prestigious Forward Poetry Prize for best book. Now selections from that and his other f...

Bought by WNJR


  • Added: Aug 29, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 1
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This audio anthology features readings by six poets, including a few who are part of the book co-edited by Cherokee writers Diane Glancy and Linda ...

Bought by WMUU-LP, KRZA, and WNJR


  • Added: Aug 23, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 3
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While at the Woodneath Library Center, novelist Larry Watson reads from his tenth book, AS GOOD AS GONE, now out in paperback. He reveals how cowbo...

  • Added: Aug 15, 2018
  • Length: 29:00