VANCOUVER, Wash. — Award winning young adult fiction novelist Virginia Euwer Wolff is the first featured speaker in Washington State University Vancouver’s annual Professional Writing Series. She speaks at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 23, in the WSU Vancouver Multimedia building lecture hall on “Writing Fiction for Young Adults.”

Pamela Smith Hill, director of WSU Vancouver’s professional writing program, describes Wolff as “one of the most respected and acclaimed American writers of young adult fiction.”

A teacher most of her adult life, Wolff began writing professionally later in life, noting, “I wanted to be a writer from childhood on, but I didn’t begin to write until I was nearly 40.”

Wolff’s award-winning novels include “Bat 6,” “Probably Nick Swanson,” “The Mozart Season,” and “Make Lemonade.” Her most recent novel, “True Believer,” won the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature, the Oregon Book Award and the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award, and was awarded the Jane Addams Honor book.

“Virginia is admired by all the many audiences that young adult fiction reaches—parents, teachers, librarians, critics, other writers, and most importantly, young adults, said Hill. A native Oregonian, Wolff makes her home in Oregon City. A selection of Wolff’s books will be available for purchase the night of the lecture, courtesy of The Bookie, WSU Vancouver’s campus bookstore.

Upcoming lectures in the Professional Writing Series include “Perspectives on TV Journalism,” Thursday, Feb. 20, with a panel of communications professionals and “From Books to Television—Science Fiction for Both Worlds,” Thursday, April 3, with novelist and screenwriter Steven Barnes.

All the lectures are at 7 p.m. in the new Multimedia Classroom Building lecture hall and are free and open to the public. For more information on this series or the professional writing program, contact Hill, at (360) 546-9677 or hillpam@vancouver.wsu.edu. WSU Vancouver is located at 14204 NE Salmon Creek Avenue, east of the 134th Street exit from either I-5 or I-205.