The Croatian Writers’ Society (Hrvatsko društvo pisaca, HDP) is a non-governmental, non-political, professional organization of writers founded in 2002.
In the fifteen years of its existence, HDP has grown into an eminent and, by the range and quality of its projects, one of the leading arts organizations in Croatia dedicated to promoting the best of Croatian literature in the region and beyond.
HDP is represented by its President and Chief Secretary. The Society’s managing bodies are: Assembly, General Board, and President’s Council consisting of the President, Vice-Presidents, and the Secretary. Every year approximately fifteen new authors become members of HDP. In 2019, HDP has counted 320 members including some of the most distinguished Croatian fiction and non-fiction writers, poets, playwrights, critics, theorists of literature, the winners of numerous literary awards in Croatia and abroad whose works have been translated into many world languages.
Our programs include the publication of magazines and journals, the organization of international literary festivals (Stih u regiji – a festival presenting the poetry scene in the region, including countries of the former Yugoslavia; Festival of the European Short Story – a gathering celebrating the short story and bringing together some of the most celebrated short story writers from Europe; Literature Link - an international literary festival that will have the first edition in September 2013, etc.), international exchange and writers’ residency programs, public talks and readings, publishing activities, literature symposiums, etc.
Every year HDP publishes five acclaimed magazines for literature and culture: Europski glasnik, one of the best and largest magazines for literature in Croatia, Tvrđa, a magazine publishing essays, philosophical treaties as well as literary and scholarly texts written by Croatian and foreign authors, Književna republika, Poezija, the only literary journal in Croatia dedicated exclusively to poetry, recognized even outside Croatia, and Relations, a magazine featuring translations of Croatian authors into English, German, French and other world languages and dedicated to promoting Croatian literature abroad.
In the past ten years, as part of HDP’s publishing division, we have started our Poetry Edition as well as published a number of individual fiction and non-fiction books. HDP has altogether published some fifty books plus some 30 bilingual chapbooks published every year as part of Književnost uživo Festival, which HDP organizes in collaboration with Croatian PEN Center.
In 2012 HDP has taken over the organization of the Festival of the European Short Story, which is due to its high quality and standards considered a model literary festival in Europe and has in its previous eleven editions managed to bring some of the most distinguished European writers, including the winners of the Nobel Prize for Literature, to Zagreb. Every year the festival has a partner country and it organizes readings, round tables, and multimedia events in different Croatian cities.
In 2012 HDP has founded branches in Istria, Slavonia and Dalmatia thus decentralizing its activities and investing efforts to enrich the cultural life in other Croatian centers besides the capital. One of our future projects is the organization of an international poetry festival that would take place in Split as well as different symposiums and festivals in Istria and Slavonia.
HDP has a very successful international cooperation, first and foremost with the European countries, such as Germany, France, Great Britain, Sweden, Poland, Hungary, Slovenia, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, etc., but also with the countries from other continents such as China, India, Japan, the U.S. and elsewhere in the form of writers’ exchange programs and individual international projects. Since 2011 we are working together with the Kamov Residency Program from Rijeka that hosts foreign writers for the duration of one month and gives them the opportunity to write and create as part of the writers’ exchange program.
Besides annual cultural programs and innovative projects adding to the Society’s activities, HDP is actively participating in the development of different legal documents regulating the status of writers as well as the production of literary and other texts in Croatia. In this field HDP has also achieved important results that are of direct influence on the professional and economic position and reputation of authors of literary and similar texts in Croatia.