9 Tips for Writing Effective Grant Proposals
Part of the Grant Writing For Dummies Cheat Sheet
To make your grant writing stand out from other proposals and get your grant funded, you have to know how to write grant applications effectively. Do some research for your specific grant proposal and incorporate the following guidelines to spin written magic:
Use a storytelling approach (with supporting statistics) in such a compelling way that the reader can't put down your application until she makes a positive funding decision. Make them cry!
Incorporate a case study of a real client your organization has served. Of course, change the name for confidentiality reasons. Show a real need of a real person.
Take advantage of online dictionaries and thesauruses to expand your command of new words and capture the grant decision maker's attention.
Write to government funding agencies and request (under the Freedom of Information Act) copies of funded grant applications. Use these documents as examples of how to write an award-winning grant application.
Research proven best practices for your proposed solutions and incorporate language from the experts.
When you find best practices, look for the evaluation results of previously implemented programs similar to yours. Know what works and what doesn't work before you write your proposed solution.
Eliminate multiple drafts from your writing habits because the most creative and "wow" words are often the first words you type.
Hire a proofreader or editor (or a college student) to read your writing and clean it up. Don't have any money? Ask a trustworthy and capable co-worker or friend.
Write in short, hard-hitting sentences. Long-winded sentences almost always lose the reader.