There are a number of places for women writers to turn for grants and to participate in writing competitions that offer small prizes. And while writing competitions usually only offer a $500 to $1,500 prize and the potential for publication, some writing grants for women we found were as large as $50,000. The sources for funding for female writers include small publishing companies, a memorial fund and even an association of “pen women” founded way back in 1897. If you are a female writer, check out these opportunities and you might just be able to write your way into some big bucks.
A Room of Her Own Foundation
This foundation for women writers and artists offers an annual $50,000 award called the Gift of Freedom, which provides this huge amount to one talented female writer every year. Applications are accepted across a number of genres including fiction, non-fiction, play writing and poetry. One finalist is selected in each genre, with one of these going on to bag the Gift of Freedom grant. The other finalists will each receive a $5,000 prize as well. Applications are due no later than November 1 with the winner announced the following March. There is a $35 fee to apply and you must be a United States resident and citizen to enter. For more information, send an email to email@example.com.
A Woman’s Write
This is a contest for by women offering a yearly $500 prize. The annual deadline to have your book considered is November 30. There is a $40 entry fee which includes a detailed critique of your work by the judges involved in the contest. To submit your work, send only the first 75 pages of your novel anytime between January 1 and November 30 each year to the good read novel competition. Entries are judged during the month of December with the annual winner announced on January 1.
Barbara Deming Memorial Fund
In 1975, Barbara Deming started the Money for Women Fund. Her work continues today almost 30 years after her death through this memorial grant that supports both women writers and artists. Women writers from the United States and Canada are invited to apply for small arts grants of $500 to $1,500 in two separate grant cycles each year. Submissions of non-fiction and poetry are due by June 30. Fiction is accepted by December 31. For more information send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the memorial fund’s website.
This annual competition is offered to women writers of poetry by publisher Switchback Books. The prize is named after Emma Gatewood. Submissions are accepted annually between March 1 and June 1 and there is a small $20 fee to apply. Submitted work should range in size between 48 to 80 pages. The winner and finalists can choose to have their work published by Switchback Books as part of their online web series by gaining a top 10 finish in the annual contest.
Glass Woman Prize
This prize offers one woman a year a $500 award. Several runners-up are awarded a $50 prize as well. Submissions are currently being accepted between September 22, 2013 and March 21, 2014 for the upcoming year’s prize. To apply, send one piece of prose that can be either fiction or non-fiction via email to email@example.com. There is no fee for entry.
National League of American Pen Women
The NLAPW was created as an association of women who wrote for newspapers and magazines around the beginning of the 20th century. It not only continues to exist today but offers a biannual writing competition for women writers. The next call for entries is quickly upcoming with applications accepted between December 5, 2013 and postmarked no later than January 20, 2014. There is a small fee to enter work in each category. This fee is $5 for poetry, $10 for articles and $15 for books. There are a long list of awards for your work to be considered for with prizes ranging from $50 to $250 depending on category. For a full list of the NLAPW writing competition rules and regulations, visit the organizations website. Or for more information call 202-785-1997.
Perugia Press Prize
This small publishing house based out of Massachusetts offers an annual competition for women seeking to publish their first or second book of poetry. The winner receives $1,000 and gets their book published by Perugia Press. There is a $25 fee to submit an application. Your manuscript should have no more than one poem per page and should total between 45 and 80 poems. Applications are accepted between August 1 and November 15 each year with winners announced the following April.