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SoA in Scotland: Industry Insider – Being Translated and Publishing Abroad

1 November @ 18:30 - 20:00 GMT

Virtual Event Virtual Event

The world of translation can seem overwhelming to newcomers, with myriad questions. Who sells translation rights? What is the relationship between translator and editor? Or perhaps most pertinently, how can I get translated?

Panellists Fionn Petch (translator and Senior Editor at Charco Press) and Sam McDowell (co-founder of Charco Press) join our chair Heather Parry (SoA Senior Policy and Liaison Manager for Scotland) for the sixth and final of our SoAis Industry Insider events, examining translation and the question of being published abroad. This series is designed for new and emerging authors based in Scotland to learn more about the publishing industry and the process of being published.



  • Welcome, introductions and housekeeping from Heather Parry, (2 mins)
  • Panel Discussion with Fionn Petch and Sam McDowell (60 mins)
  • Q&A with audience (25 mins)
  • Summary and closing comments (3 mins)


Who is this session for?

This session is aimed at new and emerging writers who are looking for a way to learn about the publishing industry and about how to approach writing as a career.


What will this session cover?

In this session, we’ll answer questions like:

  • How does a writer go about getting translated?
  • Who sells translations rights?
  • Who sells foreign rights?
  • Can a writer sell translation/foreign rights if they don’t have an agent?
  • How does a translator get picked for a project, or how do they find that project?
  • What is the relationship between translator and editor?
  • What is the relationship between writer and translator?
  • Who owns the copyright for translations?
  • Can a writer suggest their own translator, and can this turn into a long-term working relationship?


Send us your questions in advance

If you would like to send questions in advance, email [email protected] with ‘Being Translated’ in the subject header. We will prioritise questions sent in advance and will answer as many as we can from the audience on the day.


SoA @ Home Fundraising Bookshop

Browse our virtual Bookshop.org store featuring books by authors and speakers taking part in the SoA @ Home Festival. When you make a purchase using our affiliate links a percentage will go to the Authors’ Contingency Fund, providing hardship grants to authors in financial difficulty. 


The Line-Up


Fionn Petch

Fionn Petch is a translator from Spanish, French and Italian and Senior Editor at Charco Press. He grew up in Livingston and Stirling, Scotland. After studying Philosophy in England, he moved to Mexico City for 12 years, and now lives in Berlin. His translations of Latin American literature have won acclaim: Fireflies by Luis Sagasti was shortlisted for the Translators’ Association First Translation Award 2018, and A Musical Offering, by the same author, was shortlisted for the Republic of Consciousness Prize 2021 and won the Society of Authors Premio Valle Inclán for best translation from Spanish 2021. He has received two English PEN Awards, for The Distance Between Us by Renato Cisneros (2018) and for his forthcoming translation from French of A People’s History of Football.

Website:  www.elusiveword.com | Twitter: @elusiveword


Sam McDowell, Charco Press

Samuel McDowell initially trained as a commercial pilot, before embarking on a career in information technology, working for a number of global across the finance and services sectors. In 2017, along with his partner Carolina Orloff, he founded Edinburgh-based Charco Press, an independent publisher focused on bringing the best in contemporary Latin American fiction to English-speaking readers. Charco has gained significant attention in the short time it has been operating for its innovative approach to publishing, the quality of authors being produced and their championing of both translation and translators. Amongst other achievements, they have published three finalists for the International Booker Prize, and have twice won Best Scottish Small Press at the British Book Awards.

Website:  www.charcopress.com | Twitter: @charcopress


Heather Parry – Senior Policy and Liaison Manager for Scotland, Teh Society of Authors

Heather Parry (she/her) is a Glasgow-based writer, editor and publisher. She is the co-founder and Editorial Director of Extra Teeth magazine, co-host of the Teenage Scream podcast and the Scottish Senior Policy & Liaison Manager for the Society of Authors. In 2021 she created the free-access Illustrated Freelancer’s Guide with artist Maria Stoian. Her short stories and nonfiction have been published internationally, and her debut novel, Orpheus Builds a Girl, will be out in October 2022 with Gallic Books.

Website:  www.heatherparry.co.uk | Twitter: @heatherparryuk


About Society of Authors in Scotland (SoAis)

The SoA in Scotland (SoAiS) is a nation group of the Society of Authors. Members with a Scottish postcode are added to the group when they join the SoA. If you have not been added but would like to join this group, please contact us.

We offer a varied calendar of activities organised by a committee of volunteers and a staff coordinator. Group activities are reported in the SoA’s quarterly magazine, The Author.


Need to know

Before the event
  • Once registered, you will be sent a confirmation email with the Zoom link
  • If the confirmation email doesn’t arrive in your inbox, please check your junk /spam email folder
  • Please add [email protected] to your Safe Senders list so you receive our confirmation, and reminder emails
During the event
  • This online event will take place on Zoom Webinar; you will not be visible on screen but will be able ask questions via the Q&A function or interact via the chat box
  • This event will be recorded but you won’t be on screen
  • Attendees have the option to turn on the live transcript option
  • This event is 90 minutes
After the event
  • Hashtag for this event: #SoAatHome
  • You’ll be able to catch the recording on our Vimeo channel



Book your place using the registration form below.

All #SoAatHome events are free but if you can afford to, please consider donating to our Authors’ Contingency Fund and we suggest a minimum donation of £5. The fund is to help professional authors experiencing financial hardship. DONATE HERE


If you are unable to book using the registration box below, please email [email protected] with the name and date of the event you’d like to register for and we’ll confirm your place.


Accordion Content

Financial support for authors in need through the health crisis and beyond

Since March 2020, the Authors’ Contingency Fund has distributed over £1 million in small grants to authors facing financial hardship due to COVID-19.

With at least 57% of authors facing financial losses during the pandemic, we have helped people struggling financially due to contractual, employment and event cancellations, others who have lost income due to illness, and others prevented from working because of caring responsibilities.

As the health crisis continues, applications for grants continue to come in, and our emergency funds are running low.

So, if you are in a position to help, please donate via the link below. If you are an author facing financial hardship, please click here to see if we can help.


Accordion Content

20% off your first year with discount code SOAFESTIVAL20

The Society of Authors is the UK’s biggest trade union for authors – representing more than 11,300 writers, illustrators, translators and other creative practitioners.

Our standard subscription rate is just £26.25 per quarter (£18.50 for students).

As an SoA member, you’ll get:

  • Access to all our SoA @ Home Festival events for free
  • Unlimited one-to-one professional advice
  • Membership of our online and real-world professional networks
  • A range of member-only discounts, including books, insurance and travel
  • And much more.



1 November
18:30 - 20:00 GMT
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