New York University’s Graduate Creative Writing Program opens its Spring Reading Series on Thursday, March 2, at 7 p.m. with an event featuring former students of the program reading from their new books of poetry and fiction. The reading takes place at NYU’s Silver Center, Jurow Hall, 100 Washington Square East. It is free and open to the public. For further information call 212.998.8816.

Featured alumni are: Kazim Ali, Jacob Appel, Tyehimba Jess, Jennifer Knox, Ada Limón, and Lidia Torres.

Kazim Ali’s novel Quinn’s Passage was named one of the “Best Books of 2005” by Chronogram Magazine. His poetry collection The Far Mosque won the New England/New York Prize and was published in 2005 by Alice James Books.

Jacob Appel has published short fiction in more than 50 leading literary journals including Agni, Nebraska Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Southwest Review, and StoryQuarterly. He is a previous winner of the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Award for the Short Story, the Dana Award, and the Arts & Letters Prize for Fiction, among other awards.

Tyehimba Jess is the author of leadbelly (Verse Press, 2005), one of the winning manuscripts in the 2004 National Poetry Series. He was recognized as one of “2005’s 18 debut poets to watch” by Poets and Writers Magazine, and leadbelly was voted one of three best poetry books of 2005 by Black Issues Book Review.

Jennifer Knox’s first book, A Gringo Like Me, was published by Soft Skull Press. Her work is forthcoming in Best American Poetry 2006 — her third appearance in that series.

Ada Limón is the author of lucky wreck, which won the 2005 Autumn House Poetry Prize. Her second collection, This Big Fake World, was the winner of the 2005 Pearl Poetry Prize.

Lidia Torres, a Puerto Rican poet, published her first collection of poems, A Weakness for Boleros, in 2005. She is the recipient of a fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts and is currently working on a translation project.

The next event in the Spring Reading Series will take place on March 30 and will feature Jonathan Lethem and Darin Strauss.

The NYU Creative Writing Program, with permanent faculty members E.L. Doctorow, Paule Marshall, Breyten Breytenbach, Philip Levine, Yusef Komunyakaa, and Sharon Olds, has distinguished itself for over three decades as a leading national center for the study of literature and writing. The Creative Writing Program Director is Melissa Hammerle. The Reading Series, sponsored in cooperation with the NYU Book Centers and the Fales Collection at NYU, is a vital component of the Writing Program, bringing both established and new writers to NYU.

The NYU Creative Writing Program Reading Series is made possible by generous support from the Lila Acheson Wallace Theater Fund, established in The New York Community Trust by the founders of the Reader’s Digest Association. Additional support is provided by Robert E. Holmes.

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