published her first novel, Barn Blind, in 1980, and won a 1985 O. Henry Award for her short story "Lily”. Her best-selling A Thousand Acres received the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1992, and was adapted into a film of the same title in 1997. She is also the author of Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Novel (2005), a non-fiction meditation on the history and the nature of the novel. The George’s and the Jewels is her first novel for young adults.
In addition to writing, Smiley taught undergraduate and graduate creative writing work-shops at Iowa State University, was elected a member of The American Academy of Arts and Letters, and chaired the judges' panel for the prestigious Man Booker Interna-tional Prize in 2009.