Billy Collins/NaNoWriMo

Nov 13, 2014

Billy Collins has been called "America's favorite poet," and the former Poet Laureate will be visiting Iowa.

It's been said that Billy Collins, the U.S. Poet Laureate from 2001 to 2003, was the first contemporary writer to bring humor to poetry.  Collins, often heard on NPR programs, has broken many sales records for poetry and his presentations are invariably put on before packed audiences.  This Sunday, he will present a free reading in Des Moines.  Today, Charity speaks to Collins about his life and asks him to read a few poems from his new book, "Aimless Love; New and Selected Poems."  (Random House)

Later in the hour, we turn out attention to "NaNoWriMo," or National Novel Writing Month.  Charity speaks to Grinnell College visiting professor Dean Baklopoulos, whose third novel will be out next spring.  His students at Grinnell this month are working on completing novels for NaNoWriMo.   Also, we hear from Ky Cochran, a reporter for the Muscatine Journal.  The 22-year old started an on-line novel for last year's NaNoWriMo and has so far completed 18 chapters, available at the website: webuiltthishome.net.   Her on-line readers offer her feedback as she eventually hopes to complete a trilogy.