Briefly in English
Werner Söderström Ltd Literary Foundation (later; WSOY Literary Foundation) is an independent non-profit foundation with a purpose to promote Finnish literature. The Foundation fulfills its purpose by awarding grants and prizes, by awarding recidency places both in Finland and overseas and by promoting reading. The Foundation also owns and maintains an art collection consisting of works relating to literature and authors.
The main purpose of WSOY Literary Foundation is to award grants to authors, literary translators and illustrators and to literature-related projects and events. The annual grant call is held in February. The grant call is open to authors from any publishing house.
Paikan henki (Genius loci) – Anja and Erkki Haglund’s travel grant to literary translators
WSOY Literary Foundation awards the grant together with the Literary Translators’ Branch of the Union of Journalists in Finland, KAOS. The purpose of the grant is to offer literary translators a possibility to thoroughly study the language and culture of a place relevant to either a translation project or their source language in general.
The Edinburgh Residence
The Foundation holds a residence in Edinburgh, Scotland. Authors, translators and illustrators can be awarded month-long residency places. The awarded residency place also comes with a 500€ grant for living expenses. The annual open call for the Edinburgh residence is held in February.
The Eeva Joenpelto Residence – A Home for Authors
The Finnish author Eeva Joenpelto (1921-2004) stated in her will for her house to be given to WSOY Literary Foundation. The house, located in Sammatti, now functions as Eeva Joenpelto’s Home for Authors. The residency place is granted to one author at a time, for a 3-year period. Housing expenses, such as electricity, are covered by the Foundation.
WSOY Literary Foundation awards annual prizes to authors for a remarkable literary oeuvre. The prizes are awarded in October. All recipients of the prize are listed here.
The Kirsi Kunnas prize
The Kirsi Kunnas Prize is a prize awarded by Werner Söderström Ltd (WSOY) and WSOY Literary Foundation. It is awarded biannually to a children’s or adults’ poet, to a remarkable work of poetry or to a contributor advancing poetry. One of the goals of the prize is to encourage poets and other contributors to continue to work in support of poetry in the future as well. The prize was first founded in 2017 in honor of Finnish poet Kirsi Kunnas’ 70-year-old art career.
WSOY gifted the Foundation their art collection consisting of works relating to authors and literature in 2008. The collection consists of around 950 pieces: paintings, sculptures, drawings, illustrations, graphics, medals and other objects of art. The works in the collection can be borrowed to exhibitions. We also organize guided tours for groups to see the collection; you can ask the foundation’s representative, Annaliina Rintala, about them. The art collection is also presented on its own website, and on a book published in 2021 by WSOY called Kirjailija kuvassa.