Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Edith Wharton to be inducted into the New York State Writers Hall of Fame

New York State Writers Hall of Fame Established

On Friday, April 9th, 2010 the New York Library Association will induct twelve authors into the newly created New York State Writers Hall of Fame. The inaugural group will include ten writers who are deceased and two living whose writings have made a lasting contribution to literature. The list includes the following

James Baldwin
Elizabeth Bishop
Robert Caro
Frederick Douglass
Mary Gordon
Langston Hughes
Zora Neale Hurston
Edna St. Vincent Millay
Isaac B. Singer
Edith Wharton
E.B White
Walt Whitman

Robert Caro & Mary Gordon are scheduled to attend the event to receive the honor in person. Robert Caro is the noted biographer of Robert Moses & Lyndon Johnson. He is the winner of two Pulitzer Prizes in Biography and the National Book Award. Novelist & memoirist Mary Gordon is currently the New York State Author. Her work includes four bestselling novels: Final Payments, The Company of Women, Men and Angels, and The Other Side. She has also published a book of novellas, The Rest of Life; a collection of stories, Temporary Shelter; and a book of essays, Good Boys and Dead Girls. She is the recipient of a Lila Acheson Wallace Reader's Digest Writer's Award and a Guggenheim fellowship. Her most recent book is Reading Jesus (Random House, 2009).

The induction ceremony into the NYS Writers Hall of Fame will be the focus of the Empire State Book Festival Gala scheduled from 6-10 p.m. on Friday, April 9, 2010 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Albany, New York. The gala will kickoff the state’s first Empire State Book Festival. The Festival will bring together authors, illustrators, librarians, storytellers, publishers and booklovers to celebrate the literary heritage of New York State. It is free and open to the public. It will be held on Saturday, April 10th from 10 am to 5:30 p.m. in Meeting Rooms 1-7 at the Empire State Plaza, where readings, author signings and special presentations will take place.

The nominees into the NYS Writers Hall of Fame were chosen by a selection committee composed of Harold Augenbraum, Executive Director of the National Book Foundation; Barbara Genco, retired librarian from Brooklyn Public Library and Editor of Collection Management at Reed Business, Brian Kenney, Editorial Director for Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and School Library Journal; Kathleen Masterson director of the New York State Council on the Arts Literary Program, Bertha Rogers, executive director of Bright Hill Press & creator of the New York State Literary website & map; Rocco Staino, chairman of the Empire State Book Festival and Hong Yao Associate Coordinator Collection Development Queens Library.

The NYS Writers Hall of Fame will be physically located on a temporary basis at the Albany Public Library until a more permanent location can be arranged.

The New York Library Association (NYLA) was founded in 1890 to lead in the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning, quality of life, and equal opportunity for all New Yorkers.

For additional information on the Empire State Book Festival and Writers Hall of Fame visit www.empirestatebookfestival.org or contact Michael J. Borges at the New York Library Association 1-800-252-NYLA.