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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Poet Ellen Bass describes looking back on her childhood in Philadelphia for inspiration, especially in her two recent books, LIKE A BEGGER and THE ...

  • Added: May 23, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
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Bonnie Bolling, the mother of four grown sons, has been the editor-in-chief of VERDAD magazine since 2006, and now, she and her husband divide the...

Bought by WNJR


  • Added: May 16, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 1
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We begin Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with the second half of a conversation with lawyer-turned-poet Monica Youn. Though both her parents ...

  • Added: May 10, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
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National Poetry Month concludes with poet, essayist, and editor of THE GEORGIA REVIEW, Stephen Corey. He reads from his 2017 book STARTLED AT THE B...

  • Added: May 02, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
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National Poetry Month continues with the second half of this reading by Kansas Poets Laureate, Past & Present, sponsored by the Kansas Area Watersh...

  • Added: Apr 25, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
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National Poetry Month continues with this special reading by Kansas Poets Laureate, Past & Present. In part one, the current holder of the post, Ke...

Bought by WNJR


  • Added: Apr 18, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 1
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Celebrate National Poetry month with Robert Stewart, the St. Louis born writer and editor of NEW LETTERS magazine. He talks about his creative proc...

Bought by WNJR


  • Added: Apr 11, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 1
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Transitioning from Women’s History to National Poetry Month, we’ll hear from poets Hadara Bar-Nadav and Kathryn Nuernberger, who were both chosen a...

  • Added: Apr 06, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
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Our celebration of Women's History Month continues with Rachel Hall, whose own family’s history of strong women and wartime papers and photos insp...

Bought by WNJR and WMUU-LP


  • Added: Mar 29, 2018
  • Length: 29:00
  • Purchases: 2
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We continue Women's History Month with Monica Youn. A lawyer-turned-poet and twice a finalist for the National Book Award, she reveals why she felt...

  • Added: Mar 22, 2018
  • Length: 29:00