Zinta Aistars

Host of 'Between The Lines'/Freelancer

Zinta Aistars is our resident book expert. She started interviewing authors and artists for our Arts & More program in 2011.

Aistars is creative director, writer, and editor at Z Word, LLC. She's also the published author of three books in her native Latvian language. Aistars regularly contributes to many print and online publications in addition to freelancing for WMUK.

Goran Duvancic

How often have you heard that happiness is a choice? It’s the New Age thing to say. But Scott Stabile disagrees. He says it’s not a choice because we can’t choose our emotions. Stabile is the author of Big Love: The Power of Living with a Wide-open Heart (New World Library, 2017). He’s not about to apologize for feeling grief, either. When he finally allowed himself to feel grief about great tragedy in his life, he says that helped him become a better person.

Viki Redding

Although Travis Mulhauser now lives in North Carolina, his years growing up in Petoskey, Michigan, are never far from the surface. Michigan is often the vivid background in his stories, as it is in his debut novel, Sweetgirl (Ecco/Harper Collins, 2017), a 2017 Michigan Notable Book.

AP Photo

With an interest in true crime and Michigan history, journalist Tom Carr set out across the state to research some of the most gruesome and memorable murders he could find. He compiled more than 50 of them into Blood on the Mitten: Infamous Michigan Murders, 1700's to Present (Mission Point Press/Chandler Lake Books, 2016).

Ellen Longsworth

With ten books to his name, Marquette resident John Smolens is arguably one of the best known writers in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. His books include Cold, Quarantine, and The Schoolmaster's Daughter. His newest, Wolf’s Mouth (Michigan State University Press, 2017), was a finalist for the Midwest Book Award and has been listed as a 2017 Michigan Notable Book.

Gabe Thorburn

Russell Thorburn was the first poet laureate of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The Marquette resident and Northern Michigan University professor has also been honored by the National Endowment for the Arts, and is the author of several books of prose and poetry. His newest poetry collection is called Somewhere We’ll Leave the World (Wayne State University Press, 2017).