5 Steps to Writing an Award-winning Grant Proposal


STEP 1. Talk to your friends...

Talk to your friends, the grant administrators (if allowed) and like-minded artists about your project. This will help you figure out if the project is practical and do-able.

STEP 2. Map out the entire project

Map out the entire project and imagine everything that would happen and anything you would possibly need to make it happen.

  1. Make a timeline: Try to be realistic about how long it will take you to do the project, and make sure that you are not cutting the timing too close in relation to the application deadline and funding decisions.
  2. Make a budget: start researching the cost of materials and seeking out people   who can help you, with advice, other funds or in-kind contributions. Make sure your budget adds up!


Step 3. Write a project description that is jargon-free

Write a project description that is jargon-free and concisely and clearly states:

  1. What you want to do?
  2. How you will do it?
  3. What you need to get it done?
  4. Who is your audience?
  5. When will it be finished?
  6. How grateful you would be for the organization’s help?


Step 4. Read the guidelines more than once

Read the guidelines more than once and pay close attention to required formatting, language and any specific requests the grantors may have (for supporting material, budgets, even describing your project in certain language). Then ask a friend to read it with you.

 Step 5. Submit your request by the deadline!

In conclusion: Be clear, be sensible, do your research, apply by the deadline, be gracious and ask for feedback if you are turned down. Don’t let paperwork kill your joy for the work you want to do.  Stay true to yourself but try to be flexible if you can!

Article written by Susan Cohen, Development Professional