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Writers Circle

PEN Writers Circle member – Isabel Allende

Update - 30 March 2022

A warm welcome to new members Debra Jo Immergut, Jane Hirshfield, Lauren Groff, Carolyn Cohagan, Jess Walter, Gina Frangello, and Carleton Eastlake. Thank you all!

Members of the PEN International Writers Circle believe that literature and freedom of expression are at the heart of a strong, vibrant society. They support PEN International’s activities to ensure that silenced, unheard and unknown voices are connected to readers and writers everywhere.

We need donations more than ever before to meet the demands of our Writers At Risk protection work. The International Writers Circle is essential to this ongoing delivery of our humanitarian projects.

The Circle was launched publicly during the 81st PEN Congress in Québec City, October 2015. The launch received worldwide attention, including this piece in the Guardian.

Patrons of the Writers Circle pledge an annual gift - in one of three Tiers starting at £1,000 or $1,350 - which funds vital education, campaigning and protection work, and which safeguards PEN’s broader mission of advancing literature across borders and defending freedom of expression.

Without literature, there can be no meaningful freedom of expression. Without freedom of expression, there can be no meaningful literature...

If you would like to find out more about membership of the Writers Circle, please send a message to Paul.

And read our Imagination Manifesto here!

  • Members
  • Hanan Al-Shaykh
  • Margaret Atwood
  • Hanan Awwad
  • Catherine Banner
  • Simon Beckett
  • Carolyn Cohagan
  • Carleton Eastlake
  • David Francis
  • Gina Frangello
  • Rita Gabis
  • Joan Gelfand
  • Nina George
  • Arthur Golden
  • Lauren Groff
  • Hakan Günday
  • Jane Hirshfield
  • Debra Jo Immergut
  • Karl Ove Knausgaard
  • David Lagercrantz
  • Eric Lax
  • Joanne Leedom-Ackerman
  • M. G. Lord
  • Geert Mak
  • Yann Martel
  • Marisa Matarazzo
  • Vida Ognjenović
  • Ben Okri
  • Sofi Oksanen
  • Arya Rajam
  • John Ralston Saul
  • Ian Rankin
  • Bernhard Schlink
  • Jane Smiley
  • Burhan Sönmez
  • Frances Spurrier
  • Colm Tóibín
  • Jess Walter
  • Jamie Wolf
  • Yosef Wosk