Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Write Stuff - A History of the Writers' Guild of Great Britain

The launch of the official history of the Writers' Guild, The Write Stuff written by Nick Yapp, took place in London last night.

Guild Chair, Robert Taylor, praised the book for bringing to life the work of the Guild over 50 years and said that past successes should be an inspiration to current Guild members.

David Edgar, Guild President, said that the book made him realise just what wouldn't have happened without the Guild - landmark achievements such as Public Lending Right, pension schemes for writers and minimum terms agreements.

Nick Yapp thanked the Guild, of which he is a member, for the chance to write the book and thanked all those members who helped with his research.

The book is now available at £12 plus £2.50 postage & packing - but for a limited period Guild members can order a copy at the special discount price of £10 (postage paid). If you would like to purchase a copy, please send a cheque for £10 to the Guild office at: 40 Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4RX

You can read an interview with Nick Yapp on the Guild website.
What do you feel have been the Guild’s greatest achievements?

Firstly, to have survived. We live in an anti-union age, and simply to carry on doing the work it does for writers is a huge achievement. And the real fruits of all this work, without doubt, are the negotiated agreements. The Guild signed the first ever minimum terms agreements with the film industry and there have been landmark agreements with publishers, in TV, theatre and radio. These were hard won, thanks to the work of Guild staff and the time and effort put in by Guild members. The organisation has been lucky to have so many brilliant negotiators over the years, people who have been able to do deals with some of the toughest people in the business.

Another great achievement has been to maintain these agreements. They don’t just look after themselves, they have to be monitored, protected, updated and improved. It’s a huge task but the Guild has always known that it can never relax. The fight will go on forever.

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