Headquartered in the United Kingdom the Society of Authors also abbreviated as SOA has been catering professional writers and authors for a century now. Day by day the number of associates and members of the society are increasing and currently SOA has 9000 registered members and associates. The purpose behind the establishment of SOA was to solve the problems which writers as well as authors face and to protect their interests/rights. The main services of SOA include catering queries (business related) of the members, provision of training, author representation in negotiations of collective nature and solving contract issues.
Historical records tell us that the society of authors was founded in the year 1884. Lord Tennyson was the first president of the society. Since its inception great writers of the past have served as active members of the society and have been part of many campaigns as well. Some of these prominent writers are Galsworthy, wells and Masefield etc.
One notable member of society of Authors was the famous Bernard Shaw. He was among the earliest members and was very active as well. He was the one who eventually founded the league of Dramatists in the year 1931. Later on the Authors licensing and collection society was also established. Last but not the least in the year 1958 the translators association was also formed. The TA was actually formed within SOA by a specialized group.
The famous journal of the society by the name of “The Author” was first published in the year 1890. The journal is loaded with valuable information and all the records linked with the fortunes of the great writers of the past are present in the journal. Even today if one goes to the British library he or she will find archives of SOA dated from 1884 till 1960s.
Archives and prizes:
Based on the archives victor Bonham who was ex secretary of SOA wrote a wonderful piece on the authorship’s history. The history is divided into two volumes. The first volume covers history from the introduction of printing till the copyright act which was passed in 1911. The second volume covers the history from 1911 till 1981. The SOA has also been giving some historic prizes as well. Some of these prizes include The Travelling Scholarships, The Tinniswood Award, The Cholmondeley Award and The Imison Award. The prizes whether related to nonfiction or fiction are being administered by the society itself.
The societies of Authors have provided valuable benefits to the authors’ community. The society has been working in solving issues faced by professional writers and for decades has been serving the writing and author’s community. If you are an author then you should immediately become the member of this wonderful society. The eligibility criteria of the society is very simple, all they require is that you should be a writer, a translator or an illustrator. In a nutshell, an author get tremendous benefits by joining the Society of Authors.