Patricia Henley, the 2006 Virginia Butts Sturm Writer in Residence at West Virginia University, will give a free public reading at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 16, in the Mountainlair Gold Ballroom.

Henley, author of five acclaimed books of fiction, will also meet Tuesday through Thursday evenings (Oct. 17-19) with the 12 students selected for the Sturm Workshop.

Were very fortunate to have a writer of Patricia Henleys stature on campus,said Jim Harms, director of creative writing at WVU .Shes widely considered one of the best novelists in America. Our students are certain to have a wonderful experience working with her, and her public reading should be a highlight of our literary calendar.

Henleys first novel,Hummingbird House,was a finalist for the National Book Awardin 1999 and The New Yorker Fiction Prize in 2000. Her second novel,In the River Sweet,was published by Pantheon in 2002 and released in paperback in 2004; it was named a Best Book of 2002 by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, a Favorite Book of the Year by the Chicago Tribune, and was selected as a BookSense pick and Best Fall Book by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

Her publications also include three collections of stories:Friday Night at Silver Star,The Secret of CartwheelsandWorship of the Common Heart.

She has taught in the MFA program at Purdue since 1987.

Students are selected for the Sturm Workshop on the basis of a campus-wide writing competition; any student may submit a sample of writing for consideration. Those selected are among the Universitys finest creative writers. This years Sturm Writer in Residence Workshop participants are Paul Adams, Sarah Beth Childers, Amy Colombo, Lori D’Angelo, Lisa Dorward, Stacy Elza, Todd Love, Renee Nicholson, Bob Pauley, John Shumate, Ben Stein and Penny Zang.

A reception and book signing will follow the reading.