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Christmas Show 2013
December 22, 2013 04:57 PM PST
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Ben & Daniel celebrate the Christmas season with reflections on their favorite memories. Ben remembers making tamales with his mom when he was young, a tradition he continues to this day. Daniel remembers proudly writing a Christmas poem about Santa driving a Cadillac...only to find out that his teacher doubted his authorship. And Ben & Daniel also talk about their favorite Christmas songs and the memories they conjure. Ben's favorite is "I'll be Home for Christmas," which he says idealizes the often-unattainable concept of "home." Daniel tears up every time he hears "The Little Drummer Boy." Ben will also read T.S. Eliot's "Journey of the Magi."

Tim Z. Hernandez
December 17, 2013 10:03 AM PST
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Tim Z. Hernandez returns to the show to talk about his new book, "Mañana Means Heaven," which is a portrait of Bea Franco, the "Mexican Girl" in Jack Kerouac's writings. Tim tells Daniel and guest co-host Nancy Lechuga about what led him to write about Bea, and about the long search to find her. Tim also talks about the beat influence on Chicano writers. We'll also hear about the research Tim undertook to identify the Mexican deportees killed in a plane crash in 1948 in Los Gatos Caynon in California. The deportees were buried in a mass gravesite with no identification. Thanks to Tim's efforts, a new headstone with all their names was recently erected.
For this week's Poem of the Week, Nancy Lechuga reads "Bowery Blues" by Jack Kerouac.
And in this week's Poetic License, Benjamin Alire Saenz contributes part 3 in his "Words, Language, and Memory" series with a reflection on how words decipher the world, and about the movement between English and Spanish in his writing.

Anne Heffron
December 13, 2013 08:22 AM PST
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Daniel and guest co-host Marcia Hatfield Daudistel talk with screenwriter Anne Heffron, an old college buddy of Daniel's. Anne co-wrote the screenplay for "Phantom Halo" with Antonia Bogdanovich (daughter of director Peter Bogdanovich), and it's based on a short film written & directed by Antonia, "My Left Hand Man." Anne talks about casting actors for the film, her collaborative experience with Antonia, and why her next project may be writing a book about her experience growing up as an adoptee. "Phantom Halo" is currently in production.
For today's Poem of the Week, Marcia keeps it Hollywood by reading "Brad Pitt" by Aaron Smith.
And for today's Poetic License, Benjamin Alire Saenz reads part 2 of his reflections on Words, Language, and Memory. Ben reflects on why we need words as tools of remembrance, and why the process of naming things is so important to poets.

Patricia Engel
December 04, 2013 08:32 AM PST
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Daniel and guest co-host Marcia Hatfield Daudistel talk with Patricia Engel about her new novel, "It's Not Love, It's Just Paris." Patricia explains why the book is a result of wanting to write a "Paris" novel as well as a love story without being a stereotypical "French romance" book. She also explains why she was lucky to avoid the "chick lit" label on her previous books. http://patriciaengel.com/
In this week's Poetic License, Benjamin Alire Saenz begins a series in which he reflects on Words, Knowledge, and Memory. In this entry, Ben explains how he approaches all three in his life and his work.
And in this week's Poem of the Week, Daniel reads "Be Drunk" by Charles Baudelaire.

Interview with Juan Ochoa
November 25, 2013 12:07 PM PST
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Daniel welcomes guest co-host Nancy Lechuga, a local poet, for a conversation with Juan Ochoa, author of the novel "Mariguano," a book set on the South Texas/Mexico border during the Reagan-era War on Drugs. Juan talks about the similarities between his characters and his own experiences observing corruption and the drug trade on the border. Juan also explains why he believes the Reagan-era policies led to the large drug organizations of today.

For today's Poem of the Week, guest co-host Nancy Lechuga reads 3 short poems by the Russian poet, Vera Pavlova: "Am I Lovely? Of Course!", "He Marked the Page with a Match," and "I am in Love, Hence Free to Live." http://verapavlova.us/

For this week's Poetic License, Los Angeles poet and literary event coordinator Jessica Ceballos has a conversation with writer Chiwan Choi about his recent book, "It was Always the Weight of Everything," which is a social experiment in publishing. Chiwan began writing it on Facebook, has published it digitally, and is making it available for free to everyone. Learn more at https://www.facebook.com/theweightofeverything.

Manuel Ramos
November 18, 2013 02:27 PM PST
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Daniel talks with writer Manuel Ramos, whose latest work of crime fiction is "Desperado: A Mile High Noir." Manuel talks about why the gentrification of the north part Denver plays such a strong role in the book and how it affects lead character, Gus Corral. Manuel also tells us whether he's one of those writers who knows how their books are going to end before he ever writes one word. Manuel will also talk about his day job as an attorney working for Colorado Legal Services.
Today's Poem of the Week is by Cesar Abraham Vallejo. Daniel reads "Dregs."
And in today's Poetic License, Patrick Michael Finn talks about his years-long struggle with rejection when it came to publishing his first collection of stories.

Marcia Hatfield Daudistel
November 11, 2013 10:49 AM PST
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Daniel talks with Marcia Hatfield Daudistel, co-author with Bill Wright of "Authentic Texas: People of the Big Bend." Marcia talks about how the idea arose for the book, which profiles just a few of the unique characters who decided to make the Big Bend region of Texas their home. Marcia shares some interesting tidbits about some of the people featured in the book, and how their personalities were captured in Bill Wright's photographs. Marcia & Bill will present a lecture on the book on Friday, Nov. 15, at 6 p.m., at the UTEP Undergraduate Learning Center, Room 116. They will hold a book signing on Saturday, Nov. 16, from 1-5 p.m., at the Westside Barnes & Noble (705 Sunland Park Dr.).
For this week's Poem of the Week, Marcia Hatfield Daudistel reads a poem by her sister Frances Hatfield, from her collection "Rudiments of Flight." The poem is "Nude Descending a Staircase."

Fiction Writer Steve Yarbrough
November 05, 2013 12:06 PM PST
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Ben & Daniel talk with novelist Steve Yarbrough, whose latest book is "The Real of Last Chances." Yarbrough talks about why his book isn't set in the South or features Southern characters like in his past novel. He also talks about his early start as a writer and when he first discovered Southern writers such as Faulkner. Despite the Southern influence in his writing, many would be surprised at Yarbrough's fondness for Eastern European, Irish, and Latin American authors.

A talk with Alfredo Corchado,.
October 29, 2013 04:11 PM PDT
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Ben & Daniel talk with journalist and author, Alfredo Corchado. Corchado's newest book is "Midnight in Mexico," and he talks about his often difficult journey back home to Mexico in researching the book. Alfredo talks about his cautious optimism about Mexico, and why Mexico's resilient population hold out hope for the future.

In our Poem of the Week, Daniel reads "Walking Around" by Pablo Neruda.

And in our Poetic License, poet Paisley Rekdal reflects on literary obscurity.

Eduardo Corral
October 14, 2013 07:32 PM PDT
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Daniel talks with poet Eduardo C. Corral, author of the collection "Slow Lightning." Corral talks about the notebooks he uses to stitch together his poems - "Slow Lightning" came together from 7 or 8 boxes of notebooks. He also explains why he employs code switching - switching between English & Spanish - in his poems, and why he refuses to italicize the Spanish words. Corral also talks about being accidentally placed in a writing workshop and eventually falling in love with poetry and the works of Jose Montoya.

For our Poem of the Week, Corral reads "Ditat Deus" from his collection "Slow Lightning."

In this week's Poetic License, artist Pat Ochefski-Winston reads a chapter from her new book "The Curious Childhood of Patty O." which explains how she learned to fight back.

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