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The Horror Writers Association (HWA) is a worldwide non-profit organization of professional writers and publishing professionals dedicated to promoting the interests of Horror and Dark Fantasy writers. It was formed in the 1980's with the help of many of the field's greats, including Joe Lansdale, Robert McCammon, and Dean Koontz. The group was originally called HOWL (Horror and Occult Writers League), but quickly changed to the Horror Writers of America when they formally organized. HWA now has members and regional chapters throughout North America, Europe and Japan, which led to the current name of the organization.

One of HWA's missions is to encourage public interest in and foster an appreciation of good Horror and Dark Fantasy literature. To that end, HWA offers various public information on their Web site, they sponsor or take part in occasional public readings and lectures, and they maintain an official presence at many fan-based horror and fantasy conventions, such as the World Fantasy Convention and the World Horror Convention.

HWA sponsors the annual Bram Stoker Awards for superior achievement in Horror and Dark Fantasy. HWA also presents an annual Lifetime Achievement Stoker to a living person who has made significant contributions to the writing of Horror and Dark Fantasy over the course of a lifetime.

Since 1990, HWA has produced a series of "HWA presents" anthologies edited by a few of the more prestigious members and published in hardcover, mass-market or trade paperback by various publishers. Most have also had signed, limited hardcover editions. These anthologies present new stories by the members of the Horror Writers Association. In addition, in 1997 HWA produced a volume of essays on the craft of horror writing, On Writing Horror: A Handbook by the Horror Writers Association, edited by Mort Castle, with contributions from dozens of well-known HWA members. In 2006, an updated and revised version was issued.


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