Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America

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Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, or SFWA (pronounced /ˈsɪfwə/ or /ˈsɛfwə/) was founded in 1965 by Damon Knight. The organization was founded under the name Science Fiction Writers of America, Inc., and retains the acronym SFWA after a very brief use of the acronym SFFWA.



SFWA is a nonprofit association of science fiction and fantasy writers. The "America" in the organization's title refers to their primary focus of author advocacy in the United States.

SFWA sponsors the Writer Beware Blog, the public face of their Committee on Writing Scams, to expose problems and pitfalls that face aspiring writers. Writer Beware also receives sponsorship from the Mystery Writers of America. Its mission is to raise awareness of the prevalence of fraud and other questionable activities in and around the publishing industry.[1]

As part of this mission, SFWA members submitted an 'unpublishable' manuscript to independent publishing house PublishAmerica, to test their claimed editorial rigor. When PublishAmerica offered to send them a contract to publish Atlanta Nights, they revealed the hoax, and PublishAmerica withdrew the contract offer.[2] SFWA subsequently listed the book for sale through a Print On Demand service, with all profits to benefit their Emergency Medical Fund.[3]

Recently, SFWA joined the Open Book Alliance to oppose the Google Book Settlement.

Membership and eligibility

SFWA has approximately 1,600 members as of 2010.

Most members live in the United States. Active membership is limited to professionally published authors in the genres of science fiction, fantasy, or horror; the minimum qualification is the sale of one novel or dramatic script, or three short stories, to venues with certain minimum circulations or pay rates. Associate membership is for professionally published authors who have not yet qualified for active membership. [4]

Authors, regardless of nationality or residence, must be professionally published in the English language in order to qualify as SFWA members.

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