All News & Features

What’s the going rate? – Animation

on Friday, 30 May 2014 16:15. Posted in TV

We are currently updating the guidelines for writers working in animation (including puppetry). The guidelines are a useful resource for writers and we are working to ensure that the guidance we provide is accurate and up to date.

To ensure that we are publishing accurate pay ranges we need your help, we have constructed a small survey to establish what rates are being paid nationally and internationally for writing animation, for example, a bible, 5 min script etc.

If you are a professional writer who writes animation, please spare us 5 minutes of your time and complete the Animation Survey

Otto Award for David Edgar

on Thursday, 22 May 2014 08:11. Posted in Theatre

david edgar

Former Guild President David Edgar has received an Otto Award for political theatre in New York. Named after a Guatemalan poet and revolutionary executed by the authorities in 1968, the Otto Rene Castillo Theatre has been making political theatre for 30 years, alongside educational and performance work for deprived young people.

The theatre’s annual awards have been going since 1998, and past recipients include playwrights Ed Bullins and Ntozake Shange, as well as noted American companies like the Living Theatre, the San Francisco Mime Troupe and Steppenwolf. In addition to David Edgar, this year’s award recipients included playwright Katori Hall, whose The Mountaintop won the 2009 Olivier best play award.

David’s award was presented by Oscar Eustis, artistic director of New York’s Public Theatre, who commissioned and directed the first production of Tony Kushner’s groundbreaking Angels in America.

Writers' Guild AGM 2014

on Tuesday, 20 May 2014 16:14. Posted in Events

wggb-annual-report-2014All members are invited to the Writers' Guild AGM 10.30am-5pm, 4 July Cluny & Tanner Room, The Bermondsey Square Hotel, Bermondsey Square, Tower Bridge Road, Southwark, London, UK, SE1 3UN

This year’s AGM in London next Friday boasts two high-profile speakers – the new director-in-waiting of the National Theatre Rufus Norris, who will be talking on the theme “the National Theatre and new writing”, and BBC Controller of Drama Commissioning Ben Stephenson. Don’t miss it!

Key documents:

Writing war: with Julia Lee Dean and Antony Owen

on Friday, 16 May 2014 15:40. Posted in Events

The latest Writers' Guild Off the Shelf at Black's event


11am-3pm, 2 June Blacks Club, 67 Dean Street, Soho, London
To sign up or to read your own work, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Cost: £30 (payable to Blacks as an after-lunch bill)

Join Julia Lee Dean and Antony Owen to discuss writing war. The day starts at 11am with coffee or tea. After the reading and Q&A, Blacks hosts a two-course lunch with wine. Up to three audience writers are invited to read 10 minutes each of their own work afterwards.

The writers

Julia Lee Dean is a novelist, playwright and tutor, and was a member of the Young Writers’ Programme at the Royal Court Theatre in 2003. She has performed as a stand-up comic in London & Edinburgh and has produced three of her own plays for the Camden and Belfast Fringe festivals. Her new novel And I Shall be Healed looks at the emotional and psychological damage of the First World War. Dean is now working on her second novel, The Lost Son of Ambrose Garfield.

Award-winning poet Antony Owen’s first collection of poetry My Father’s Eyes Were Blue was published by The Heaventree Press in 2009. His work often explores the emotional effects of conflict and this was reflected in his second collection The Dreaded Boy (Pighog 2011). His latest work, The year I loved England (Pighog), is a collaboration with Irish poet Joseph Horgan and will be published in July. He was invited to meet Irish President Michael D Higgins in Coventry on his first state visit to England in April in recognition of this Coventy/Cork collaboration. In 2013, Owen had an exhibition of poetry and photography accepted by the curator of the Hiroshima Peace Museum.

The London Library – a writers’ haven

on Tuesday, 13 May 2014 18:17. Posted in Books and Poetry

Chloe Brookes from The London Library explains what they can offer writers

“An intellectual refuge, essential research centre, treasure-house…” (Andrew Marr).

The Art Room London Library by Paul Raftery

Founded in 1841 by Thomas Carlyle, the London Library in Piccadilly is one of the world’s largest independent libraries, a literary oasis housing a million books in the arts and humanities, all freely available to browse and borrow on 15 miles of open access shelves. With books dating from the 16th century to the latest publications in print and electronic form, throughout its history the Library has sought to be ‘contemporary in every age’ and acquires 8000 new books every year.

The London Library offers an ideal space in which to write, think and discover in the heart of London. Equipped with purpose-built Reading Rooms and numerous quite study areas nestled amongst the book stacks, the Library is a place for serendipitous inspiration.

The Library is Wi-Fi equipped throughout and members enjoy access to an extensive range of online resources including JSTOR and a host of online archives and subscriptions. For those who may not be able to visit the Library in person, there is a postal loans service which will dispatch books and periodical volumes to readers anywhere within the UK and Europe.

‘After day one I realised I was going to come here every day. You have company – you don’t have solitude… It’s extraordinary how comforting it is.’ (Victoria Hislop).

Of the 1 million books in the Library, notable collections include Literature and Fiction with a huge range of novels, poetry, plays, essays and literary criticism. Other notable collections include History, Biography, Topography, Travel and exploration and the Art collection of books on art and architecture. There is fine coverage of the history of science, the social sciences and philosophy, and the Religion collection houses an exceptional range of theological texts and studies in comparative religion. The foreign languages are served with books in over 50 languages, with particular riches in French, German, Italian, Spanish and Russian collection.

Membership of the Library is open to all.

'The London Library is my favourite place in the whole of London. A unique resource and a wonderful place in which to read and research.' (John O'Farrell)

Membership Benefits:

  • Browse and borrow more than one million books
  • Benefit from generous book loan periods and no fines
  • Access to 750 magazine & periodical subscriptions
  • Free access to electronic resources, from JSTOR to Private Eye and Who’s Who online, wherever you are in the world
  • Postal loans service anywhere in the UK & Europe
  • Wi-Fi equipped Library & reading rooms
  • Membership and discounts to other organisations in the literary community

Annual membership: £475 per annum. (£39.58 a month payable by direct debit)

Young person’s membership (age 16-25): £238 (£19.83 a month payable by direct debit)

Those who cannot meet the membership fee may apply for assisted membership from The London Library Trust.

The London Library, 14 St James’s Square, London SW1Y 4LG

Photo by Paul Raferty

At the turn of the century

on Tuesday, 13 May 2014 09:16. Posted in News & Features

To celebrate the life of for Writers' Guild President, Bill Ash, who died last month, we reprint a version of an article he wrote in 1999.

What enables writers in Britain to face the future in a changing world with some confidence? The answer is the continued existence of their own trade union of professional writers which is affiliated to the Trade Union Congress and which enjoys a relationship with writers’ unions in the United States and across the world – the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain.

The Writers’ Guild is not simply a voluntary association of writers in some particular field offering its members advice and encouragement for a nominal subscription fee. It is instead a group of highly committed professional writers of books, plays, film scripts, radio and television programmes willing to work for each others’ good in a closely ordered democratic framework complying with TUC rules, with earnings-related subscriptions, agreed mandates and disciplinary procedures and a regularly elected executive council.

It is the trade union character of the Guild which has empowered it, on behalf of writers of books, stage plays, film scripts, creative radio and television programmes, to negotiate officially with appropriate authorities in establishing minimum terms and acceptable conditions for the sale of all written works. It has also established for the benefit of writers such institutions as Public Lending Right which compensates authors for the loan of their books from public libraries and the Authors’ Licencing and Collecting Society which collects for authors copyright payments for the foreign use of their works.