R&W funding supports writers fees only. Funding applications, however, must be submitted by the organization sponsoring the event. If the application is approved for funding, a check made payable to the writer will be sent to the sponsoring organization; the organization will give the check to the writer at the time of the event.
You may apply for $50 to $350 per writer for readings or literary performances. For workshops, you may apply for $100 to $200 per session. (NOTE: In California, we generally grant no more than $500 total for a workshop series.)
You may apply for as many writers as you’d like, but please keep in mind that Poets & Writers provides a maximum of $1,500 per organization annually in New York State and California, and $500 in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, New Orleans, Seattle, Tucson, and Washington, D.C. (This is due to the limited funds we have available in each jurisdiction.)
We fund emerging as well as established writers. Please list publication credits, which may include books (including chapbooks and self-published work), as well anthologized work. For performance-based writers, please list featured performance credits (date and venue) or include a published review of the presentation.
In order to lawfully pay a writer the grant money awarded, we must have his or her Social Security number. (If we pay more than $600 to an individual writer during the course of a year, we must by law report those payments to the IRS; the writer will receive a 1099.) Residents of countries outside of the United States are exempt from this requirement.
No. We cannot accept applications from writers, nor can we fund the project director, a board member, or any paid employee of the organization applying. However, writers can encourage organizations to apply on their behalf.
We fund events at colleges and universities, if they are open to the general public. We also fund events at high schools, if they are held after school. We do not fund events during the school day or for elementary school students.
We typically review applications within four weeks of receiving them. You will receive an e-mail indicating that your application has been approved, declined, or is still pending—usually because we need more information. If you have not heard from us one month after submitting your application, please call to check on the status of your application.
No. We do not accept in-kind contributions as matching fees. However, you can provide in-kind contributions in addition to a cash match. Also, writers may use the cash match for expenses such as travel and lodging if they choose.
If your grant has been approved, you will receive the check for the writer approximately three to six days before the event. As the sponsoring organization, you are responsible for giving the check to the writer.
Please notify us as soon as possible. We will stop the check and issue a new check, which may take a week or two to process. Please make sure to provide us with a reliable address (some project directors prefer to give us their home addresses). If the original check arrives after the new check is issued, please return it to the appropriate Poets & Writers office.
Posters, flyers, postcards, press releases, and newspaper clippings are all acceptable. We accept printouts of e-mail messages, web pages, and social media posts as well, but please keep in mind that online publicity should meet the same textual and graphic standards as any other type of publicity.
If multiple writers have been funded as part of one large program, you will need to fill out a separate online report for each writer, but may upload publicity files to just one of the reports. The timeliness with which you return reports will be taken into consideration when we review future applications from your organization.
Keep in mind that a detailed report, with a good description of the event and its impact on your community, will help Poets & Writers to raise more funds for the R&W program. A few extra minutes devoted to your report may have a direct impact on the funds we will be able to distribute next year. Thanks for your help in this regard!