success

Seven Characteristics of Successful Grant Writers

Panic is often the first reaction I hear from grant writers who have not fully developed their ideas, do not have an understanding of what exactly is needed from each person on their team, and who are writing at the last minute. On the other hand, I hear cautious optimism from people who are ready… read more

review

The Final Step to Avoid Grant Rejection

I have received funding for the majority of the grants that I have submitted. One of the main reasons for my success is the pre-review process which, I believe, is a must before proposal submission. This process involves asking three different types of colleagues to provide feedback on your grant. The pre-review steps are: A… read more

connecting

Grant Success: Stop Stating, Start Connecting

If you want to connect, take your audience with you from the start. Effective communication in a grant proposal requires knowing your goal and stating it clearly, but also remembering that you have to construct that goal around what your donor wants to hear. Within this context, I want to convey an interesting encounter I… read more

doctor

Five Crucial Facets of Successful Research Funding

Do you want to get a grant? Chances are that you can, but only if you properly organize yourself. Whether you have a complex or simple proposal, the major facets you must master are: rigor, focus, preliminary data, communication, and persistence. Rigor Rigor encompasses a whole host of practices. In research, it’s the belief that… read more

1st-step

The Most Important Advice for New Grant Writers

Several million dollars in funding, heaps of grant proposals that have been implemented, numerous partnerships, and many interdisciplinary successes have taught me that grant writing is a process. Like any other skill, it takes passion, preparation, credibility, and perseverance. If you are writing your first grant proposal, it is extremely important you remember the following… read more

plan

10 Key Ingredients of Winning Proposals

There are numerous components that comprise a winning proposal, and there are many factors that ultimately lead to the donor’s decision to fund or not to fund a proposal. The key elements, however, begin with a solid idea, continue with a clear business plan and end with deliverables that are evidence-based. Specifically, winning proposals should… read more

humanities

How to Write a Successful Humanities Grant

In the many grant writing workshops I teach throughout the United States and Canada, participants who are interested in humanities grants frequently ask me what their odds of being funded are, and if there is a magic formula to obtaining a grant. Given that thousands of applications are submitted yearly to the National Endowment for… read more

first step

Your First Step: Understanding the Request for Proposal

Before you start writing, you absolutely must thoroughly read and understand the Request for Proposal (RFP). My very first experience with the RFP was so intimidating that I almost did not want to proceed with the submission. However, when I realized that much of it contained boilerplate information about the agency and their legal requirements,… read more

abstract

The Abstract: First Impression that Seals Your Fate

The abstract is the most important part of your proposal because it is the first impression you make on the donor. This introduction will seal the fate of your request – for better or worse. You should devote a substantial amount of time and effort to writing this section. You need to keep in mind… read more

storytelling

How to Win Grants with Great Storytelling

An excellent proposal writer needs to be an excellent storyteller. My role model for storytelling was my father. I could listen to his stories over and over again without tiring. He would spin memorable tales with vivid characters, both antagonists and protagonists. Without any doubt, I attribute my success in proposal writing to what I… read more