Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A Quick First Draft Will Make It Easier to Research Your Grant

To me, grant-writing is more like a sport than a science. Like any sport, it is a game that richly rewards quick, high-volume producers.

From this perspective, a quick first draft does wonders for your financial success. Sometimes the best thing to do is to write the entire proposal out - from beginning to end - as quickly as possible.

This is what Peter Drucker called the "zero" draft. In this draft, I like to write as quickly as possible while still following all of the funders' directions. This way, I get a good overall picture of the scope of the grant application, and I can identify what exactly the funder really expects from my non-profit client.

Finally, I like to do my research after I have created the first draft...otherwise I just do not know what facts and figures will be really needed to create a credible argument.

In the past, I used to do a lot of reading and internet searching to make sure that I collected all the right information. Unfortunately, I soon realized that 96% of all that data never appeared in the final grant application. Today, I write my conclusions first...and then research only what it takes to make the most credible case for that particular grant.


Miriam said...

You write very well.

John C. Drew, Ph.D. said...

Thank you for the compliment. For me, I've tried to keep my writing simple and clear. I don't try to make it fancy. :)