Don’t Write a Grant Proposal Without This Book

Every artist thinking of applying for a grant should own a copy of Gigi Rosenberg’s recently published The Artist’s Guide to Grant Writing.

I’ve had this book for a couple of months now and have been keeping it all to myself, mostly because I’ve been reading every word.

The Artist's Guide to Grant Writing by Gigi RosenbergWith just a couple of chapters to go, I thought it was time to share with you.

The Book’s Style

Gigi’s writing is warm and accessible. She weaves her personal story and experiences into a text that could be terribly dry. It’s not. Gigi makes you believe you can do this. And she gives you the tools to get down to work.

The text in The Artist’s Guide to Grant Writing is straight to the point and easy on the eye. Gigi keeps our attention with lists, bullet points, and subheadings. It’s easy to scan and not feel overwhelmed.

“Gigi’s Cheat Sheets” are lists of tips at the end of every chapter, which nicely summarize that chapters’ contents. They’re worth the price of the book ($16.99US) alone.

The Book’s Substance

Reading this book brought back painful memories of writing grants for my museum programs. There were several moments when I realized exactly why I didn’t receive the grant money for certain proposals in my past. Ouch!

But if you’re serious about your projects, you’ll read, learn, and improve.

Here are some of the sections I underlined in my copy of The Artist’s Guide to Grant Writing.

  • “The Process of grant writing lets you test the worthiness of an idea before you invest time and money into it.” (p. 31)
  • “The first rule of grant writing is ‘Follow directions.’ And if you do nothing more impressive than this, your application will be better than most.” (p. 36)
  • “Give yourself six to eight weeks to prepare your grant application.” (p. 62)
  • “Write a lousy first draft.” (p. 66)
  • “Show the funder that you care more about your project than about their money.” (p. 85)
  • “Make sure that all items in our budget are mentioned in your answers on the grant application and vice versa.” (p. 134)

Your First Step

Download an excerpt from the book here.

While you’re waiting on your copy to arrive, you can sign up for Gigi’s updates (left sidebar) and get 2 instant downloads with grant-writing tips.

Whatever you do, don’t write a grant proposal without reading this book first.

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9 comments to Don’t Write a Grant Proposal Without This Book

  • Looks like a good book. I skimmed through the free excerpt and can see where this will come in handy. Particularly for someone like me, who dreads dealing with paperwork and guidelines! :)

  • Amanda

    This is an excellent, extremely helpful book- and I agree, very easy to read. I read it last month in preparation for a grant that I’ll be applying for soon. My favorite part about the book is the assignments the author provides at the end of each chapter, small actions that helped me clarify where I am wanting to go with my project and build confidence in my ideas. I’m sure her knowledge and advice will prove indispensable as I continue to work on this grant. READ THIS BOOK!!!

  • I applied for a grant in December then forgot about it…A couple of weeks ago I got an email from the site…I was #17 out of 300 (the top 4 win)…Now I am #13…I am not going to win the grant, but what happened was that the energy of all these people voting for me daily created a huge burst of work from me…I totally redesigned my design & now have an amazing prototype that is a million times better than what I had proposed…It was worth the 5K alone to get the moral support… The process has been so instructional & helpful to my career I would encourage others to apply for grants- not for the money, but for the improvements to the work that ensue…(truth is, I didn’t want to win in the end because I had underbid on the work & feared having to make 1000 Trumpeter Swan nests for only 5 dollars apiece…) (you can see the bid by hitting my website link)…(the improved design is at grovecanada.net)

  • Last time I was involved in grant proposal writing it was as part of a group of astronomers trying to get time on the Hubble. My part was supplying background research to support our proposed study and going over the later drafts of the discussion aspect of the proposal mostly for readability and grammar (and no silly science typos). I think I may also have gone over the instrument function and filter inputs as well because those had to be VERY precise and there’s always a lot that has to be specified.

    I wonder if such experiences would help or hinder me in attempting to undertake writing an art grant proposal…

  • […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Quinn McDonald, Artflute.com. Artflute.com said: Don’t Write a Grant Proposal Without This Book : http://www.artbizblog.com/2011/02/grant-writing-for-artists.html […]

  • I downloaded and read the free information from this book this morning and found the information, thought process and attitude very practical and insightful. Now I can’t wait to get the book to read the rest!

  • You can see a grant proposal I have going on now by clicking my website link…I’m not going to get it, but what has happened is the intense energy from all of these voters got me to totally redesign my project & now I have a much better prototype- which is better for me than getting the money actually… You can see the redesigned product at http://www.grovecanada.net (The Trumpeter Swan nest)… The process has been the journey…

  • Hi Alyson – Yes, I have recently picked up this book and read a few pages. I think it’s going to be very interesting and helpful for the grants committee I am a member of. Looking forward to using it!

  • […] He’s not kidding! It’s an intense process that isn’t for the weak. I’d compare it to writing a grant application. […]