YSS Announces 2015 Empire State Award Winner

Submitted by: Mary Ferris, YSS President

The Youth Services Section (YSS) of the New York Library Association is pleaseed to announce that Vivian Vande Velde is the 2015 recipient of the Empire State Award for Excellence in Literature for Young People.  This annual award is presented by YSS to a New York State author to honor a body of work that represents excellence in children’s and young adult literature.  2015 marks the 25th anniversary of the award.

Vivan became a writer because of her love of stories (especially fantasy!) and the encouragement of her parents, who convinced her she could do whatever she set her mind to.

She can’t remember a time before she wanted to be a writer.  The year her daughter was born she left her job as a secretary and began writing.  It turned out to be harder work than she thought it would be; getting her book published was even harder.  After 32 rejections her first book, A Hidden Magic, was published in 1985.  She has since written over 30 books.  Vivian lives with her husband Jim in Rochester, New York.

Writing can be easier with the support of other writers, and Vivian is part of a writers group which includes other Empire State Award winners Cynthia DeFelice and Bruce Coville. They help each other by asking questions and offering encouragement and advice. 

Vivian will accept her award at the Empire State Luncheon at the NYLA Conference in Lake Placid this fall, where she will be the featured speaker.  More information on the upcoming Conference and Trade Show may be found here.