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.

Mary Whelan

Alzheimer’s disease affects more and more families, and it figures more often now in novels as authors explore the dynamics of the disease. Kalamazoo writer and former psychotherapist Deborah Gang addresses Alzheimer’s in her debut novel, The Half-Life of Everything (Bancroft Press, 2018).

Peter Robertson

When Lori Evesque earned her degree in food and biological process engineering at Purdue University, she didn’t see herself becoming a sheep farmer - yet. She began at Kraft as a food engineer. But that changed when she was asked to create a lighter and thinner waffle by adding wood pulp. That's right - wood pulp.

John Cardinal

Western Michigan University cultural anthropologist is a member of the Sault Saint Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. Living among the tribe, also known as the Ojibwa, while pursuing a master's degree at WMU, Allard came to the troubling realization of just how big a problem youth suicide is among Native Americans. He wrote a book about it: Guided by the Spirits: The Meanings of Life, Death, and Youth Suicide in an Ojibwa Community (Routledge, 2018).

Mark Wedel

He refers to himself as an American. A muddy, filthy, cranky American. Kalamazoo resident Mark Wedel got that filthy by riding a bicycle along the trails of the Great Allegheny Passage and Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Towpath in May 2017. He wanted to experience the solo ride but he also wanted to reach Washington D.C. to express his crankiness about the results of the 2016 presidential election. Wedel writes about his journey in Mule Skinner Blues.

Mary Hatch

They met at a party and their conversation naturally turned to art. Mary Hatch is a visual artist; Elizabeth Kerlikowske a poet. The two began to exchange their work, matching words to images. It worked – so well, in fact, that they decided to create a business and then a book. Art Speaks: Paintings and Poetry pairs poems with paintings.