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Word S9.7 – My cousin wasn't a murderer, and other fabulous parameters of this penultimate pod

On this episode, a Diné writer releases her first novel.

Plus, we examine an international true-crime story by a Valley poet-turned sleuth.

And we extend a bow to Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month with a day at the Kentucky Derby.  

Guest list

“Shutter” is the debut novel by  Ramona Emerson who is originally from Tohatchi, New Mexico.   

She appeared at Left Coast Crime this past March in Tucson.

The book is set on the Navajo Nation in New Mexico, and the central character is haunted by the ghosts of victims in this book while also facing the real danger of an Albuquerque cartel.


Out of the dozens of conversations we’ve engaged in on Word, you’ve never heard anything like the one with  David Chorlton, a Valley-based poet who recently released a true crime memoir 30 years in the making, titled “The Long White Glove: Uncovering the Truth Behind a Murder Mystery from Vienna.”

It’s a deep-dive investigation into a family member from his native Austria who was convicted of a horrific crime in the late 1950s.

While the conversation is a bit convoluted at times, the subject matter isn’t something that can be explained with bullet points.

So, in the interest of modern meme culture … wait for it.

We wrap this penultimate episode of the season with a nod to Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and a day at the Kentucky Derby.   

Karen Rigby lives in the Valley and has an upcoming collection of poems titled, “Fabulosa,” that’s due out next year. She identifies as half-Chinese and was born in Central America.

One reviewer of a previous poetry collection described her writing as such: “Rigby’s poems remind us of the solitude of the collector, even while they seem to assert that it is only through her particular combination of curios, her fragmentary methods of recognition and collection, that the contemporary consciousness may not only emerge, but also recognize herself among others,” according to Julia Anjard Maher.

Rigby also offers some great advice to burgeoning writers and reads a poem from her upcoming collection.

We’d like to thank the members of KJZZ who provide monthly sustaining gifts of support.

Now, it’s your turn.  Please become a member by clicking on the donate tab at KJZZ.org or on the mobile app.  

Portions of Word have been nominated for Edward R. Murrow and Public Media Journalists Association awards.

We’re back at the end of May with our penultimate episode for this season.

Thanks so much for listening!

Tom Maxedon is the host of KJZZ’s Weekend Edition on Saturday and Sunday from 6-10 a.m. and All Things Considered on Monday from 3-6 p.m.