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The Journey of Grantwriting: Part 1

Welcome to “The Journey of Grant Writing”. Over the next several weeks we will cover many topics that will assist you in drafting future grant proposals.

You may be one of those individuals that maintain a full time job and, like so many of us, you are asked to take on the additional task of grant writing. Hold on, don’t leave the article yet! You are invited to learn, obtain, and utilize the tools which I am going to pass on to you. I guarantee these materials will be vital tools to add to your grant writing tool box for future use.

In this first article I will acquaint you with what I call the beginner aspects of grant writing. This article will cover grant writing terminology, writing skills and my favorite condensed list of doom and gloom words.

Before we move into these topics I always share with my students grant rule number one: Follow the funders’ directions explicitly. Do not attempt to change any of the instructions you have been given. I can assure you your proposal will be immediately eliminated if an instruction is not followed exactly.

Rule number two is: Do not wait until the thirteenth hour to draft a grant proposal. I share this piece of information as I have sat on grant review panels and we, as the reviewers, can spot haste a mile away. Usually, with these quickly drafted proposals, there are many gray areas and red flags. What I mean by this is the proposal usually does not have hard facts and will most likely contain spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors. Additionally you, as the author, may understand what you are attempting to relay to the reviewer; however, the reviewer is usually left scratching his head. Guess what? Your proposal will be heading directly towards the rejection pile.

In order to help you become a successful and proficient grant writer I will first familiarize you with frequently used grant terms. These terms will allow you to know where to locate your RFP (request for proposal) and it will contain the funder’s (the party offering the grant funding) expectations.

So sit back and continue to read as we begin with grant definitions.