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AMHERST, Mass—The Amherst College Creative Writing Center kicks off its annual reading series with a joint reading by Claire Messud and Daniel Hall on Monday, Oct. 2, at 8 p.m. in the Babbott Room of the Octagon at Amherst College. The event is free and open to the public.

Claire Messud is the author of When the World was Steady, a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award, and The Last Life, a novel which "beautifully illuminates the dislocations of body and soul that are the true consequences of exile" (Andrea Barrett). Her latest book, The Hunters, will be published in August of 2001. She teaches fiction writing at Amherst College.

Daniel Hall has published two collections of poetry. Hermit with Landscape was selected by James Merrill for the Yale Series of Younger Poets in 1989. Strange Relation was selected by Mark Doty for the National Poetry Series in 1996. He has received awards and fellowships from the Ingram Merrill Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Whiting Foundation, among others. He teaches poetry writing at Amherst College.

The event is sponsored by the Amherst College Creative Writing Center, which puts on a yearly reading series featuring both emerging and established authors. Participants in the 2000-2001 series include Rachel Wetzsteon, Lionel Garcia, Amitav Ghosh, Vikram Chandra, Colm Toibin, Forrest Gander, Agha Shahid Ali and J.D. McClatchy. The Creative Writing Center Website is at