A number of writers working in the freelance field have regular jobs to pay the bills. This is especially true for newbies who find it difficult to get a steady stream of income coming in. For any individual with a dream of writing full time and quitting the daytime job, consider getting a grant.
Freelance writing grants exist if you happen to know where to look for them. They bridge the gap between the dream of writing full time and seeing it come true. Most are large enough to supplement an income in this field and a few are more than most people will make in their daytime jobs.
There are two types available, competitive and non-competitive. This will review both types to help inform writers what options are on hand for these when and if you need them.
Countless ones are accessible for both newbies and veteran writers. There is an enormous field of opportunities open for fiction and non-fiction writers alike.
Various competitive ones match social causes with writing opportunities. Projects worth thousands of dollars are on the table. A great example of matching a social cause would be a company wanting to produce articles surrounding green living or recycling. A terrific match is writers displaying expertise or skill in this field.
Applying for a competitive grant typically means submitting applications or proposals to a review board. The board or sometimes simply a single reviewer evaluates the information and makes a decision of who gets the money.
The decision process includes giving points and ranking competitively all applications received. The highest scores win out.
These are similar to competitive grants, but are awarded using a different method. Candidates receive the money based on a legally defined blueprint. All grants have their own formula. A number of these never need a proposal submitted, an application is everything needed. Each will have their own guidelines outlining what is required and who is eligible based on the guidelines.
A wonderful example would be extending one to female writers. There is competition with each applicant, but a proposal from each one is not necessary. Non female writers are not eligible based on the blueprint.
Where to find grants
These are a few sources to check into for freelance writing grants. Several are general subjects while others are for a specific genre or venue. These are both competitive and non-competitive as well.
A few tips to make it easier
There are several things every writer looking at a grant should do to make certain they increase the likelihood of getting one.
a) Always research each one carefully. Know what the foundation or company offering the grant is searching for and make sure you are a great fit for it.
b) Read the instructions for applications and proposes thoroughly. Follow the directions to the letter
c) Always handle yourself professionally. If you are denied, follow up with a thank you for the opportunity to apply, etc. There is a possibility a professional connection is made for future work or other writing gigs even with a denial.
d) Look for these through foundations, companies, organizations and government agencies. Thousands exist for a variety of different monies.
Hunting for these is a full time job and there is lots of competition. This is a time consuming project for many and prepare to spend the time needed to make it successful. Though the time investment is substantial the payoff is terrific when you find one and get the funds you need.
Literally thousands of funds are located in foundations established for writers in need of grant monies. Some wonderful examples are the Amber Brown Fund, Martha Weston Grant and the Barbara Carlin Grant.This is only a glimpse of what is available around the web and there are lots more to be discovered. This is a place to begin your journey as a freelance writer looking for a writing grant.
This particular video outlines great material for writing grant proposals.