Complete the online application. Register or log in at pw.org/funding.
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Thank you for your interest in the Readings & Workshops program (R&W), which supports writers who give readings and workshops at community venues in New York State and California, and in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, New Orleans, Seattle, Tucson, and Washington, D.C.
Please see our guidelines for instructions regarding the application process. If you cannot find the information you are looking for in this FAQ, or if you have additional questions, please call or e-mail us.
For events taking place in New York State, Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, New Orleans, or Washington, D.C., call (212) 226-3586 x226 or e-mail email@example.com.
For events taking place in California, Houston, Seattle, or Tucson, call (310) 481-7195 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Complete the online application. Register or log in at pw.org/funding.
Applications are considered on a first-come, first-served basis. Applications must be received eight weeks prior to the event, but we encourage you to send them in earlier. (Our fiscal year runs from July 1 through June 30. All applications for the next fiscal year received before May 1 will be held and processed shortly before July 1.) You may apply for a series of events all at once or separately throughout the year.
No. Nonprofit status is not required.
Yes. However, we prefer to support free or low-cost events in the interest of making literature available to the widest possible audience.
No, past funding does not guarantee future funding.
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.)
Yes, but you must submit a separate application for each writer.
No. But note that in California we fund no more than two out-of-state writers per organization per year (due to restrictions from our funders).
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.
Yes, our application requires that you include the writer’s Social Security number and address.
We are happy to make suggestions, but please keep in mind that we are not a booking agency and that you must contact the writer yourself.
We are happy to make suggestions if you are interested in giving a reading or workshop in a particular area or with a particular type of organization. You must then contact the organization yourself.
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.
No. We're happy to fund a writer who incorporates performances by other artists in his or her presentation, but we can pay only the writer, not the other artists.
Yes, if original poetry, fiction and/or creative nonfiction is the primary focus of the piece.
No, writers are paid as independent contractors and are not employees of Poets & Writers.
Yes, as long as the translator is reading from his or her own translations and/or conducting a translation workshop in the categories of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction.
We fund readings and workshops taking place in any city in New York State or California, and in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, New Orleans, Seattle, Tucson, and Washington, D.C.
No. Please wait until you have the writer(s) booked before applying.
No. We do not fund programs that are exclusively for young children. We do fund programs for teenagers, families, and/or intergenerational audiences.
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.
All events must be open to the public unless they take place at venues that serve special populations, such as prisons, hospitals, and senior centers.
Yes. You may replace him or her with another writer, but please notify us as soon as possible prior to the event.
No. A private residence is not acceptable, but we do fund events at a variety of venues, such as community centers, parks, stores, cafes, businesses, schools, and libraries.
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.
Our goal is to have the organizations we work with match our portion of the writer's fee. However, we assess the needs and the capabilities of each organization and evaluate applications accordingly.
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.
Poets & Writers publishes a free online Literary Events Calendar. We encourage you to post your R&W-funded event, and all of your literary events!
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!