Welcome to Word, a podcast hosted by KJZZ's Tom Maxedon about literature in Arizona and the region.

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National Poetry Month continues and after a virtual trip to Tucson last episode, we come back to the “Valley of the Poet” and explore some intriguing questions.
April 13, 2021
Coming up on “Word," we’re back from spring break and just in time for National Poetry Month. On this episode, we head to the University of Arizona Poetry Center in Tucson — well via Zoom anyway. Plus, we sample some poetry and talk verse with Tucson writers.
April 1, 2021
Misako Yamazaki
KJZZ's third-annual Haiku Writing Contest was a success. Catch up with the winner and hear more about haiku from a Phoenix-based writer. Plus, listen to invigorating discussion with nationally renowned writers from this year's virtual Desert Nights Rising Stars Writers Conference.
March 3, 2021
writing a haiku
Na Hai Wri Mo — National Haiku Writing Month — continues, and so does KJZZ’s third-annual Haiku Writing Contest. This year’s theme: What's new for you during the pandemic? On this episode, we’ll catch up with organizers of this year’s Arizona Matsuri which is going virtual.
Feb. 16, 2021
Welcome to the Season 5 opener of “Word” and the launch of KJZZ’s third-annual Haiku Writing Contest. This year’s theme: What's new for you during the pandemic?
Feb. 1, 2021
Welcome to the final episode of “Word” for this season. As we close out the 2020, we’re exploring nonfiction, something we don’t often discuss as a literary art form.
Dec. 18, 2020
What do a retired veteran, a museum archivist and a technical writer have in common? They all finished the challenge of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and wrote at least a 50,000-word novel during November.
Dec. 8, 2020
NaNoWriMo writers are past the halfway mark this November. In this episode of "Word," we’ll find out how some in the Southwest are coping and keep on truckin’ to the finish line: 50,000 words by the end of the month.
Nov. 17, 2020
It’s nearly Halloween and almost National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). As we close out October, we celebrate the holiday and those who are stepping up to write 50,000 words in a month beginning Nov. 1.
Oct. 27, 2020
Trump and Biden debate graphic
President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden held a final debate Thursday in Nashville, with Kristen Welker of NBC News moderating. After a haphazard first debate, and a canceled second one, this final debate followed a new set of rules. Get analysis and fact checks from NPR.
More Arizona Election News | Arizona Voter Guide
Oct. 22, 2020
Rebecca Roanhorse
On this episode, we welcome Annika Clark, chosen by Creative Youth of Arizona as the Phoenix Youth Poet Laureate. Plus, we talk to poet and retired teacher Joey Connolly and Pueblo Indian writer and NYT bestselling author Rebecca Roanhorse, who has a new fantasy novel called “Black Sun” out this month.
Oct. 9, 2020
On this episode, the coronavirus pandemic continues to present challenges for creatives. We’ll talk to a returning guest about it. Plus, we turn our attention to younger audiences and readers, beginning with puppets.
Sept. 29, 2020
"Word" is a KJZZ original podcast about the literary arts in Arizona and the region. We begin this season with the first of three returning guests, David Hemphill, executive director of Black Theatre Troupe in Phoenix.
Sept. 1, 2020
Craig Santos Perez
Before we go on summer break, we close out Season 3 of “Word” by continuing our celebration of Asian and Pacific Islander American Heritage Month with honest conversations about how those communities are coping in the age of COVID-19.
May 27, 2020
Hari Alluri Candian Writer From Vancouver
Is the planet getting an environmental reset in the age of COVID-19? That’s the question we begin with in this penultimate episode of “Word” this season. Plus, we celebrate Asian and Pacific Islander American Heritage Month.
May 14, 2020
On this edition of “Word,” we put a cap on National Poetry Month in the state and the region.
April 29, 2020
National Poetry Month continues in the age of COVID-19. And, in this episode, we are heading to Tucson, virtually, to check in with our neighbors in Southern Arizona.
April 20, 2020
Rosemarie Dombrowski
It’s National Poetry Month. And even as the coronavirus pandemic continues to shutter brick and mortar performance spaces, poets conquer with technology to stay in contact with audiences and promote their writing.
April 7, 2020
While we hunker down amid a pandemic, creatives are facing tough times, too. Performances have been canceled. Open mics have been shut down. But we carry on with trying to stay in touch.
March 27, 2020
We celebrate International Women’s HERstory Month with some influential Arizona writers and readers.
March 13, 2020