Our Policy on Paying Writers

This page sets out what Words Ireland pays writers, and how it treats writers, when engaging them for work. A separate page, here, sets out how the 7 constituent organisations of Words Ireland pay writers.

We pay a standard fee of €200 to writers for public events including talks, panel discussions, etc.

We pay mentors a total of €300 per meeting x four meetings with mentees. We ask mentors read up to 10,000 words in advance of each meeting, or 180 lines of poetry, and provide feedback on text during each meeting. Each meeting lasts roughly 90 to 120 minutes.

Through our Literature Audience Development initiative, in partnership with six regional venues, we ensure a fee of €200 is paid to writers by venues to perform their work or speak on public stages such as theatre spaces or main spaces in arts centres, though we try to make €300 our standard payment in this regard, especially where the writer is the sole or central literary performer on stage. Writers interested in pitching events to venues can talk to Words Ireland about the fees or guarantees they might seek for fully developed event ideas.

We pay writers a minimum of €125 to attend 2-hour meetings on programming consultancy.

The above fees should be taken as the minimum we pay for these jobs. We respect authors’ right to negotiate upwards on any fee offered.

We withhold the right to not pay speakers when they meet both the following conditions: 1) where they are not writers or artists and 2) they are speaking in their capacity as employees of another organisation.

All payments are made within 30 days of receipt of an invoice. Invoices can be submitted in advance of events to be paid shortly after they take place.

We cover the cost of travel where the writer is travelling outside their county of residence. We also cover accommodation where the length of travel involved and/or the start time of the event necessitates it.

We are upfront about the fees from the first email or phonecall re. an offer of work.

We ensure that the initial communication reflects the full scope of what an artist is expected and required to deliver, including details of any video or audio recordings that will be made of the event.

We aim to anticipate VAT charged by writers and accommodate this where our budget allows.

We ensure writers fees are ringfenced within our budget so that fees are protected if overruns occur in other areas.

We ensure that writers copyright is respected, both in terms of moral and economic rights.

We believe in the importance of transparency on matters of pay and working conditions, and that sharing this information publicly is to the benefit of all writers.

Much of the language in the above is borrowed from the Arts Council’s Paying the Artist Policy document. We encourage other literature and arts organisations, or anyone who pays writers, to create similar pages on their website stating standard fees, or fee ranges, and information on the conditions of work, and treatment of writers.