Monday, November 30, 2009

A NOTE ON GRANTS FOR NON-PROFIT ARTS ORGANIZATIONS

Hello again.
I've been getting a few requests lately regarding funding for non-profit arts organizations so I thought I'd address this subject briefly. I just added something about this on my FAQs. Anyway, to all you non-profit organizations out there and to those who would like to start a non-profit, I unfortunately don't post about organizational grants. I only post opportunities for individuals. Sorry about that. It's a huge task as it is and I really try to limit my focus. That said, what I do know is that funding is very tough in the U.S. right now, due to the crash, and although some things are looking up, it is such a time of flux that, for those of you who really want to start a non-profit from scratch, you might want to wait out the storm a bit and see how the next few months go. It is very hard to get funding for new non-profits in the first three years. Foundations like to see stability and this is not a stable time. I don't want to burst your bubble or crush anyone's dream, I'm just a realist at heart. So do your research but be a bit cautious. Aside from that, good luck!
Best wishes,
Mira

ON WRITING CONTESTS, THE LAST ARTIST GRANT POST, EMAIL ISSUES ETC.

Greetings all. I'm sorry I've been gone all week. Holiday stuff---turkeys, a multitude of dogs, humanoids and the usual sugar coma following excessive pie consumption. But I'm back now and was disturbed to find out that yet AGAIN, google disabled my Mira's List gmail account. So I'm switching to another email address and it won't be with google. I'll do that later today or tomorrow so check back to see my new email address in the next day or so. I am sincerely sorry that some of you haven't been able to reach me.

On another note, I've had several comments about the last post, the one that offers financial support for an artist (ARTWORKInternational, Inc.). Some people thought it was a little dodgy and they couldn't tell if the $12,000 was in the form of professional services or if the artist got funding plus professional help. Some readers also objected to the $35 application fee. I looked at the grant more closely and yes, it is true, the $12,000 award is not given in actual financial assistance but rather it pays for the professional help that this organization provides. So those of you who are looking for a lump sum of money, this is not for you. However, this could be valuable to some of you who really need to jump-start their careers but don't have the funding to do it. That said, I cannot vouch for this organization as I really don't know much about it. I found the announcement in a couple very reputable sites though, and there are several organizations that offer funding this way, i.e. in the form of professional help, so I don't find that part odd (although they only let you know in the fine print way at the bottom of the webpage, which I do find sneaky.) Anyway, if you are interested in checking this place out and you find more info on it, please let me know. I simply don't have the time.

A word about application fees though---most of the time, I try to find opportunities that don't charge a fee to apply. However, the fact that some do charge a fee should not stop you from applying if it's a great grant or residency. Some of the more prestigious fellowships and grants charge a fee, anywhere from $15 to $50. The stakes are much higher, and they sometimes have to pay judges, and (unfortunately) some places feel that if you are willing to pay to apply, you are probably more serious. Think about college applications. You have to pay for those too and pay a lot. So I wouldn't discount something just because there is a fee.

Here is one situation I WOULD discount though, and that is the fee for contests that offer little money. I often see writing contests (more than visual art ones for some reason) that charge, say, $15 to enter, yet the top award is only $100! Forget it. As far as I'm concerned, those contests are bogus. I just wouldn't enter them at all. Any reputable and serious literary contest (or art contest) offers a prize of at least $1000 if the entry fee is $15. That's my little rule. The other ones are not respected in the writing world. Often, people just start these contests because they want to make money. Think about it--you get a bunch of people to send in $15. You're not paying a judge. It's all online so there's no processing or mailing costs. It's not a literary journal so the writer doesn't get to publish the piece she sent. And all they have to do is pay the person who wins $100 to $500. But how do we know there was a real person who won the prize? I've checked out some of these websites and they just post someone's name and the title of their piece. There are no respected judges from the world of letters, no opportunity to publish, just some individual who is taking your money. BOGUS.

I know some really wonderful and helpful people are posting these opportunities on their blogs. But I have been in the literary world for a while and trust me, if you want to enter a contest, go to Poets & Writers or check out what is going on in AWP's Writer's Chronicle for reputable contests. These other contests are just not worth your time.

Okay. I'm done yelling. I'll post my new email address soon. In the meantime, stop reading this and get back in the studio!
Cheers,
Mira

Monday, November 23, 2009

CALLING ALL ARTISTS, FILMMAKERS, PLAYWRIGHTS AND WRITERS!

Thanks to ArtSake for these first two:
(ARTISTS) ARTWORKinternational, Inc. New Financial Support Grant:
ARTWORKinternational, Inc. is pleased to announce a financial support grant for the full-spectrum career development of individual visual artists in the amount of $12,000.
The selected artist will be awarded one full year of career development via ARTWORKinternational, Inc.’s comprehensive global services. Beginning on January 15th, 2010 the grant recipient will become a “career client” of ARTWORKinternational, Inc., benefiting from a wide range of services, including portfolio design and creation, resume building, grant writing, full-spectrum career development, placement with gallery and museum venues and much, much more. Deadline is December 31, 2009. Visit the website for more details: http://www.artworkinternational.com/grant.php

(PLAYWRIGHTS) The Professional Artists Lab 4th Annual Script Competition: Scientists/Technologists/Artists Generating Exploration: The Professional Artists Lab and the California NanoSystems Institute at the University of California, Santa Barbara are offering the the fourth STAGE International Script Competition, open to plays about science and technology. The winning script will receive $10,000. Submitted plays must explore scientific and/or technological stories, themes, issues and/or events. Science and/or technology must figure prominently in the script, whether in form or content or both. Deadline: December 15, 2009. For more info, go to: http://stage.cnsi.ucsb.edu/index.html.

(ARTISTS) Artist-in-Residence Program at SF Recycling & Disposal, Inc.: The goal of the Artist In Residence Program at SF Recycling & Disposal, Inc. is to use art to inspire people to recycle more and conserve natural resources. The company provides selected local artists with the opportunity to create art using materials they gather from San Francisco's refuse. This includes 24-hour access to a well-equipped studio, a monthly stipend, and an exhibit at the end of their residency, but artists seem most excited about having 24-hour access to the materials. For more information, go to: http://www.sfrecycling.com/AIR/index.php?t=d.

(FILMMAKERS) Cinereach Grants: Just a reminder that the Cinereach Grants are due December 1st, 2009, for the winter grant cycle. Grants usually range from $5,000 to $50,000 and are awarded to filmmakers at any stage in their career. Visit the website: www.cinereach.org for more information.

(ALL) Petrified Forest National Park Residencies in Arizona: The Artist-In-Residence Program at Petrified Forest National Park offers professional visual, performing, and literary artists the opportunity to pursue their artistic discipline while being surrounded by the park's inspiring landscape. Selected artists stay in park housing for two-week periods from April through October. No stipend is provided. Applications will be accepted for the 2010 program with postmarks dated through March 15, 2010. For more information, go to: http://www.nps.gov/pefo/parknews/artist-in-residence.htm.
**(Thanks to http://www.fundsforwriters.com for this one)

(WRITERS) Andrews Forest Writer's Residency in Oregon: The mission of the Long-Term Ecological Reflections program is to bring together writers, humanists and scientists to create a living, growing record of how we understand the forest and the relation of people to the forest, as that understanding and that forest both change over time. For the Andrews Forest Residencies, writers are provided a comfortable, three room apartment at the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest, access to a majestic ancient forest and world-renowned research site opportunities to interact with research scientists as they go about their work opportunities to have their writings included in The Forest Log. For more information, go to: http://springcreek.oregonstate.edu/residencies.html
**(Thanks to www.fundsforwriters.com and http://www.practicing-writer.com for this one).




Thursday, November 19, 2009

MUSICIAN GRANTS, PARIS ART SCHOLARSHIPS, AND MORE!

Some new deadlines for you...please note that the first one is one I recently posted but the previous deadline was wrong (it is Feb. 8th, not the 10th). Cheers, Mira

(ALL/SCHOLARS) Five College Women's Studies Research Center Associateships: The Center invites applications for its RESEARCH ASSOCIATESHIPS for 2009-2010 from scholars and teachers at all levels of the educational system, as well as from artists, community organizers and political activists, both local and international. Associates are provided with offices in our spacious facility, faculty library privileges, and the collegiality of a diverse community of feminists. Research Associate applications are accepted for either a semester or the academic year. The Center supports projects in all disciplines so long as they focus centrally on women or gender. Research Associateships are non-stipendiary. Deadline is February 8, 2010. For further information, contact the Center at TEL 413.538.2275, FAX 413.538.3121, email [email protected], or visit the website: http://www.fivecolleges.edu/sites/fcwsrc/.

(ARTISTS & MUSICIANS) The Harriet Hale Woolley Scholarship:
Fondation des Etats-Unis: The Harriet Woolley Scholarship: 8,500 euros plus an art studio or music studio at the Fondation des Etats-Unis in Paris for nine months. These grants are awarded to American graduate students or post-graduates in the areas of visual arts or music. Applicants must be between 21 and 35 years of age and possess American citizenship. Preference is given to applicants who have already done some graduate study. For more information, visit the website: http://www.feusa.org/en/cultrue/harriet-hale-woolley-scholarship. Deadline is January 31, 2010.

(MUSICIANS & COMPOSERS) Omni International Arts Center Residency: Each August, approximately a dozen musicians--composers and performers from around the globe--gather for two and a half weeks to share in a unique collaborative music making residency program. Music Omi encourages its residents to participate as members of an international musical community; sharing ideas, performing each others’ works and writing music for one another while exploring their own musical vision. Music Omi invites applicants from all musical disciplines who wish to broaden their artistic horizons and engage actively with a diversity of other musicians. Unlike most artists residency programs, where artists come to work in isolation, Music Omi actively encourages the exchange of ideas and the sharing of cultures through active collaboration.

The Omi International Arts Center is located approximately two and a half hours north of New York City in the historic Hudson River Valley. The facilities, set on 300 acres of rural farmland, include a large two-story barn with indoor studios, as well as the 150 acre Field's Sculpture Park. Although no travel funds are provided, full room and board are provided for participants. For more information, go to: http://www.artomi.org/music.htm. Deadline is February 1, 2010.

(WRITERS & SCHOLARS) National Foundation for the Arts and Humanities (NEH): NEH/CNR Fellowships for Research on Italian Cultural Heritage: The NEH and the Consiglio Nazionale delle Richerche (CNR) of Italy are cooperating in the support of scholarly research. They invite applications for humanities research focusing on Italy's cultural heritage in relation to that of the United States. The Fellowships program accepts applications from writers, teachers, and researchers, whether or not they have an institutional affiliation. Award is $50,400 for twelve months. Deadline is May 9, 2010, however, this is an anticipated deadline so please check the website for details: http://www.neh.gov/grants/guidelines/fellowships-italy.html. Also, please check the NEH website for other large fellowships in the humanities.

(MUSICIANS) The Traditional Music Foundation Grants: Funds provided to individuals in the form of need and merit-based scholarships to students enrolled in undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institutions. These scholarships allow artistically talented individuals with financial need to pursue college and university degrees focusing on traditional or bluegrass music studies at an eligible educational institution. Recipients must be pursuing a full-time course of study focusing on traditional or traditionally derived music such as bluegrass. Recipients must prove full-time enrollment with good academic standing at an eligible educational institution, and must be following a course of studies focusing on traditional or bluegrass music. These scholarship funds must be used for tuition and related fees paid to the university excluding room and board. Artist development grants are also available from TMF. For more information, please go to: http://www.traditionalmusicfoundation.org.


(MUSICIANS/MUSICOLOGISTS) The Henry Reed Fund Award: The American Folklife Center, Library of Congress, presents an award from the Henry Reed Fund for Folk Artists every other year. The next call for applications will begin in February 2010. The award amount is usually between $400 and $1000. The award may be split between more than one recipient. Visit the website for more info: http://www.loc.gov/folklife/grants.html#archie.

Projects and activities might include:

  • Payments to folk artists, their families, their descendants, or their cultural communities in connection with publication or dissemination of documents (audio recordings, manuscripts, photographs, etc.) in the American Folklife Center's collections.
  • Honoraria or reimbursement to folk artists for programs, such as concerts, workshops, or exhibitions, which feature those folk artists and their arts.
  • Programs honoring and celebrating folk artists for their cultural contributions.
  • Support for the costs of documenting distinguished folk artists and the acquisition of resulting documentation by the Library of Congress.

(STUDENTS) Hispanic Scholarship Fund/ McNamara Family Creative Arts Project Grant: The Hispanic Scholarship Fund / McNamara Family Creative Arts Project Grant is designed to provide financial resources to outstanding Latino undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in a creative arts related field: media, film, performing arts, communications, writing, etc. This grant is only intended to assist students in beginning and completing an art project. Students may be potentially eligible for grants up to $20,000. Check website for deadlines and details.




Tuesday, November 17, 2009

HOW TO GET PUBLISHED: SOME SUGGESTED SITES

Greetings all,

Well, it looks like my email is up and running again. Sorry about the confusion. Anyway, today I wanted to remind you to make sure to check my sidebar once and a while because I periodically upload new links and resources. I have also finally separated my blogrolls into two lists: blogs that relate to Mira's List subjects (and other issues, such as how to find an agent, how to write a great query letter, etc) and blogs that are my personal and quirky favorites (okay, I like food, I like neuroscience and I have a special fondness for the strange marriage of art and science, particularly science during the Age of Discovery. I also am fond of baby animals, graphic novels and 19th century polar exploration. Well. I could add to the list but I won't bore you any more than I already have.

One another note, and this one is for writers—Lately I have been getting a lot of personal mail asking me about the publishing world. Now, while I do know a bit about that elusive and mercurial world, I think there are many more bloggers out there who are really experts in this field. Here are a few of my favorite sites for you writers out there who have written me asking about how to get an agent, how to write a query letter, etc. Victoria Mixon, who writes eloquently and amusingly about a variety of publishing and writing issues: http://victoriamixon.com/. I love Victoria and suggest you visit her site. Another blogger I just adore uses the name Moon Rat and you can find her at http://editorialass.blogspot.com. She is an editor at some unnamed publishing house and, for my money, offers the best advice for both emerging and published authors. She's hilarious, witty, ironic and will answer all your burning questions about the publishing industry. I am all about Moon Rat.

If you want to write a kick-ass query to an agent, then there is no one better than Wendy Burt-Thomas at askwendy.wordpress.com. She is the author of the The Writers Digest Guide To Query Letters which I will add (right now!) to my bookstore at the bottom of this blog. Another great site is literary agent, Nathan Bransford's blog: http://blog.nathanbransford.com. Nathan is an agent for Curtis Brown so he really knows what he is talking about. I find his posts extremely insightful. And knowing what I know about the biz and how hard most agents work at getting writers deals (mine certainly deserves a Purple Heart), it is heartwarming to know that there are some literary agents out there willing to take time out from their busy schedules to help emerging writers understand how to get published.

Anyway, there are so many great sites in the blogsphere that deal with publishing and breaking into the literary market that I am just leaving it all up to them. Come here for your weekly dose of Mira's List but go to these experts on the business of getting your great poems, stories and novels out into the world.

And speaking of publishing, please check out the books at the bottom of this blog. And if you have a hankering to buy any holiday gifts from Amazon in the next few weeks, please do your book search from my site, on the right sidebar where it says "Search for Grant Books!" because I might earn a couple pennies that way!

More to come in the next few days....and we have some great interviews lined up for you for December and maybe this month too. Now get off the computer and do your art.
Cheers,
Mira

Friday, November 13, 2009

EMAIL PROBLEM AGAIN

Dear Readers,

Once again Google has disabled my Mira's List email account and I don't know why. While I am waiting for a reply, if you had tried to email me and still have a burning question or comment after checking out my FAQs, just leave a comment below this post and I'll get back to you. Sorry about the inconvenience!

Have a great weekend.
Best wishes,
Mira

Thursday, November 12, 2009

DANCE RESIDENCY IN TRINIDAD, LBGT SCHOLARSHIPS, FIBER ARTS GRANTS AND MORE!

(DANCERS & PERFORMANCE ARTISTS) Artist Residency in Trinidad: The Republic of Sydenham welcomes proposals from international dance and performance artists who are interested in a self-directed residency in Port of Spain. Self-directed residencies are opportunities where the artist is free to experiment and explore new directions in the production of his or her work. Interaction with other artist residents is encouraged through creative collaboration, showings, and informal discussion. Applications are open to professional dance and performance artists from all around the world. The next application submission date is January 1, 2010. Please contact the Program Coordinator, Jennifer Joyce at [email protected]gmail.com and/or visit the website for more information: http://makedathomas.org/resapp.aspx.

(ARTISTS) NYC Residency in the Art of Illumination: The Illumination Atelier, an on-going project in the arts,
seeks individuals interested in learning the fine art of illumination. The Illumination Atelier will provide an introduction to the history and special characteristics of manuscript illumination and illuminated painting. Apprentices will work on and complete the actual illuminated paintings, utilizing knowledge gained in the Atelier setting and the specific characteristics of illumination pertinent to the current project. The Atelier accepts two live-in interns per internship period; non live-in interns are welcome at all times during the year, depending upon available openings. Interns are provided with full board during their internship residency.

Interns also receive nine months of free studio space within a larger, shared space with 24/7 access. Living space is not provided. There is a modest one-time stipend depending on funding. There is no monthly living stipend.The deadline is April 2010. Please check website for more details: http://www.efiaf.org/atelier.htm or write: [email protected]

(ALL/SCHOLARS) Five College Women's Studies Research Center Associateships: The Center invites applications for its RESEARCH ASSOCIATESHIPS for 2009-2010 from scholars and teachers at all levels of the educational system, as well as from artists, community organizers and political activists, both local and international. Associates are provided with offices in our spacious facility, faculty library privileges, and the collegiality of a diverse community of feminists. Research Associate applications are accepted for either a semester or the academic year. The Center supports projects in all disciplines so long as they focus centrally on women or gender. Research Associateships are non-stipendiary. Deadline is February 8, 2010. For further information, contact the Center at TEL 413.538.2275, FAX 413.538.3121, email [email protected], or visit the website: http://www.fivecolleges.edu/sites/fcwsrc/.

(STUDENTS) Scholarships for LGBT Students: Point Foundation (Point), the nation's largest scholarship-granting organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students of merit, announces the opening of its 2009 application season. Students who will be enrolled in undergraduate or graduate programs for the 2008-09 school year are eligible to apply for the prestigious, multi-year scholarships. Applications for the 2009 cycle will be available January 2, 2009 and close March 1, 2009. The application process is open to all LGBT students in the U.S.A., regardless of level of education or citizenship. However, all scholars must attend an accredited college or university in the United States.For more info, go to: http://www.pointfoundation.org.

(CHILDREN'S BOOK WRITERS & ILLUSTRATORS) SCBWI Golden Kite Awards
: The Golden Kite Awards offers $2,500 to authors and illustrators in four categories: fiction, nonfiction, picture book text, and picture book illustration. Editors of winning books will also receive $1,000, and for the winning book in the Picture Book Illustration category, an additional $1,000 will be given to the book’s art director. Authors and illustrators must be SCBWI members. Please visit the web site for more details: www.scbwi.org. Deadline is December 15, 2009.

**I will do a special post (hopefully soon), addressing the very underrated yet incredibly vital world of Children's book writing and illustrating, so stay tuned!

(ALL) The Harry Ransom Center Fellowships: The Harry Ransom Center at The University of Texas at Austin annually awards over 50 fellowships to support scholarly research projects in all areas of the humanities, including literature, photography, film, art, the performing arts, music, and cultural history. Applicants must demonstrate the necessity of substantial on-site use of the Center's collections. The fellowships range from one to three months, with stipends of $3,000 per month. Also available are $1,200 to $1,700 travel stipends and dissertation fellowships with a $1,500 stipend. Complete applications for the 2010-2011 Research Fellowships in the Humanities must be received by February 1, 2010. More information about the fellowships and complete application instructions are available online at http://www.hrc.utexas.edu/fellowships/

(WRITERS/SCHOLARS) Schomburg Center Fellowships: The Schomburg Center Scholars-in-Residence Program assists those scholars and professionals whose research in the black experience can benefit from extended access to the Center's resources. Fellowships funded by the Center will allow recipients to spend six months or a year in residence with access to resources at the Schomburg Center and other centers of the New York Public Library. The program encourages research and writing on black history and culture, facilitates interaction among participating scholars, and provides wide-spread dissemination of findings through lectures, publications, and colloquia and seminars. It encompasses projects in African, Afro-American, and Afro-Caribbean history and culture. For more information and for application qualifications and instructions, please visit the website for deadline and application information: http://www.nypl.org/research/sc/scholars/aboutscholar.html.

(FIBER ARTISTS) Fiber Artist Grant: This $500 grant is open to all national and international artists who work with Fiber Materials/Fiber Techniques (Textiles). All media welcome, traditional & contemporary, including public art and installation. Open to photography, ceramics, fibers, sculpture, printmaking, and video artists who tap into the fiber realm. If you are the winner, your images & a short bio will be added to the IFC website. Images of your work and research along with descriptions will also be included in the International Fiber Collaborative's 2009 May Newsletter. Deadline is February 15, 2010. For more information go to www.internationalfibercollaborative.com


Sunday, November 8, 2009

INTERVIEW WITH WRITER ALEXIS GRANT

Greetings all. So today I'm doing something a little different—this is the first in a series of interviews with emerging and established artists; residency, arts council and grant foundation directors, and others in the arts. I hope these periodic interviews can offer you a window into the grant application process as well as give you an insider's view of certain residencies and retreats. I also hope that having a mix of both emerging and established artists will be enlightening in some way for your creative own process. Our first interviewee in the series is Alexis Grant, a writer who recently interviewed me for her own blog, Aspiring Author.

Alexis is a journalist writing her first book, a travel memoir about backpacking solo through Africa. Until May 2008, she worked as a health reporter for the Houston Chronicle. She left that job to travel through West Africa, Cameroon and Madagascar, freelancing for various publications along the way. Through her travel blog, Inkslinging in Africa, Alexis brought readers along for the ride as she voyaged by boat to Timbuktu, to Cameroon to deliver a gift to a grieving polygamous family and to Madagascar to discover the howling Indri lemur.

Thanks for being my first interviewee, Alexis! I'd like to start by asking you about the book you are working on. What was it that inspired you to write a memoir and do you have any favorite travel writers you would like to recommend to our readers?

I’ve long wanted to write a travel memoir. But while I had the idea in the back of my head when I set out for Africa, I really didn’t decide to write the book until the last week of my six-month trip. Looking through my notebooks and entries from my travel blog – which is now serving as a skeleton for my book – I realized I had enough of an interesting story that I really could write a book.

As for my favorite travel writers, I like reading Paul Theroux. But my writing is nothing like his. I have an entire bookshelf filled with travel memoirs written by women – specifically women traveling alone – but instead of mimicking them, I’m trying hard to find my own unique voice and angle. Many travelogues written by women revolve around a relationship, either running away from one or finding love at the end of the story, and my book does not follow that plot line. My solo travel story is about seeing Africa through my own eyes, not about looking for love – and I think a lot of readers will find that freeing.

On your blog, Aspiring Author, you write so enthusiastically about The Hambidge Center, a residency program in Georgia. Can you tell us a little bit about your experience there and how it impacted your work?


Five weeks in the mountains of northern Georgia, without the distractions of everyday life, helped me produce chapters of my book I don’t think I would have written at home. I was also fortunate to click with several other artists and writers who were at Hambidge during my residency, people who inspired me and fed my creativity. With the combination of quiet workspace, access to nature and being surrounded by other creative thinkers, I reflected on my goals, with this book and beyond. Everything seemed clear: where my story was going and where my life was going. It was so easy to focus, so easy to make writing my priority.

Practically speaking – because I know your readers are always looking for residencies to apply for – I spent most of my days at Hambidge alone, writing in my studio. Four nights a week, I gathered with the seven other artists for a vegetarian dinner prepared by a fabulous chef. Since the Center is located on 600 acres of woods, I walked on trails almost every day. Hambidge isn’t free, there’s a $150/week fee, but they do offer scholarships (that's how my unemployed self could afford to go). The Center also has awesome pottery facilities.

Now that you got bit by the residency bug, what other places would you like to go to and why?

Yaddo. It’s in Saratoga Springs, New York, only about 45 minutes from where I live outside Albany. I visited earlier this year for a fundraiser and got to check out the castle-like main building that overlooks the community’s 400 acres. Not only does Yaddo attract some really talented artists and writers, but it’s right in my backyard, part of my neighborhood. There’s something special about that. Yaddo is one of the most prestigious residencies in the country, so it may be a few years before I’m accepted there!

Hedgebrook. This is one of the few (possibly the only?) residencies in the country reserved for women writers. Half an hour north of Seattle, it’s small, I believe with six residents at a time. I’m a big believer in the energy created by female solidarity, so when I heard about this place, I knew I wanted to go. They only accept applications once a year, in September.

I think your posts about the perplexing process of becoming a published author would be very helpful to many of the emerging writers who read my blog. Would you mind sharing a couple significant things you have learned along the way?

Most of what I’ve learned that I consider significant relates to my strengths and weaknesses as a writer. As much as I’m enjoying this process, I’ve learned that writing a book can be lonely, and I don’t really like working alone in my home office – I miss being in a newsroom, even if it means having an editor over my shoulder and hoards of distractions. I’ve learned that my attention span is more suited to writing articles than a book-length work.

What I didn’t realize before attempting this project was how difficult first-person writing would be coming from a journalism background. Until ten months ago, I’d always kept my own opinions and ideas out of most of my writing. I was used to reporting on other people – that’s my strength. But to make this memoir any good, I have to insert myself and my feelings into it. That’s one of the things I’m focusing on now. And working on that is making me a better writer.

There’s so much information online about how to get an agent, how to get published, how to write. For a while, I paid a lot of attention to it, because it was all new to me, and I was trying to learn how to navigate the system. But then an author gave me some advice that I’ve since realized was really sound. He said I should ignore all of that noise, and focus on writing a good book. If you write a good book, he said, everything else will fall into place.

If you got a grant to spend a year any way you wanted, what would that dream year look like?

I’m a dreamer, so I can think of a million ways I’d spend that year. If I was smart, I’d use it to get started on my next nonfiction book project (the details of which I’m not ready to reveal yet).. But I’ve still got the travel bug, so realistically I’d put it toward backpacking again in another part of the world, and continuing to write on my travel blog.

Where? There are so many parts of the undeveloped world I’d like to see and write about: Southeast Asia, Latin America, parts of Africa I haven’t yet visited. I would certainly pick a theme, because that makes it easier to turn stories into a book, and who knows, I may just have another travel narrative in me.

Thanks for joining us Alexis. I look forward to reading your book!

***FYI: The next deadline for the Hambridge Center is January 15th, 2010. You can find out more about this wonderful residency in Georgia by visiting: http://www.hambidge.org.

Friday, November 6, 2009

NATIVE AMERICAN FELLOWSHIPS, DANCE GRANTS, BIG MONEY FOR FILMMAKERS AND MORE!

Greetings all...naturally, the announcements below have the usual Mira's List annoying formatting issues due to her inability to figure out the easy transition from Word doc. to Blog (great solutions from people who use PCs but not Macs...oh well). Anyway, the following announcements are from the Artist Trust, The Chicago Artists Resource, the Foundation Center and my own little meandering through cyberspace....happy hunting....more to come of course. And by the way, thanks for the donations this week! Cheers,
Mira

(ALL) Artistay Residency in France: Artistay is a service for artists, writers, architects, academics, art teachers, curators, etc looking for a short term stay as part of a residency program in France in order to realize a personal artistic project. Artistay works with several art places in France - artists residencies, writers retreats, art colonies, art centers, etc., offering a professional support to artists from all over the world. Residencies can last anywhere from two weeks to six months. Artistay service is free of charge. For more information visit: http://artistay.com/home.html.

(FILMMAKERS) Cinereach Grants: Cinereach is now accepting letters of inquiry and sample work for their winter grant cycle. The deadline is December 1, 2009. They will request full proposals from selected projects in January. Grants range from $5,000 to $50,000 and are awarded to films at any stage. For more information, visit their website: http://www.cinereach.org/.

(PERFORMING ARTS) Travel Subsidy Grants: Funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and administered by Arts Presenters, the Cultural Exchange Fund (CEF) Travel Subsidy Program is a travel subsidy program awarding grants from $2k - $10k to assist US-based presenters working to build partnerships and collaborations with international touring artists, companies, and their collaborators. In promoting the display of work by artists from around the world in its own cultural context, APAP strongly encourages travel to the the following locations: the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, and Africa. More info: artspresenters.org

(DANCERS) Free Rehearsal Space for Chicago Dancers/Choreographers: DanceBridge is an initiative of the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs to support Chicago's professional dance artists and choreographers and is now accepting proposals for its Winter 2010 sessionDanceBridge, an initiative of the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. Its goal is to foster the creation of new and innovative work by Chicago-based dancemakers/choreographers. DanceBridge offers 10-12 hours/week of free rehearsal space in the Dance Studio of the Chicago Cultural Center for 12 week periods in the winter, summer, and fall. Application Deadline: November 13, 2009 for the Winter session, January 11 - April 9, 2010. Guidelines as well as the application can be found at www.cityofchicago.org/CulturalAffairs. On the left side of the screen, there is a link "Apply to DanceBridge."

(PERFORMING ARTISTS AND WRITERS) Kresge Foundation's Detroit Fellowships: The Kresge Foundation's Kresge Arts in Detroit initiative provides financial support for eighteen Kresge artist fellowships annually. Each fellowship consists of a $25,000 award and customized professional development opportunities for emerging and established metropolitan Detroit artists working in the visual, performing, and literary arts.

Applications are now being accepted for fellowships in the performing and literary arts. Performing Arts includes choreography, music composition (in all genres — classical, country, electronic, folk, hip-hop, jazz, rap, rock, etc.), performance art, spoken word, sound art, and interdisciplinary work within the above disciplines. Literary arts include art criticism in all disciplines (including literary, performing, and visual arts), creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry, playwriting, and interdisciplinary work within the above arts disciplines. Deadline Feb. 26, 2010. http://www.collegeforcreativestudies.edu/.

(NATIVE AMERICAN ARTISTS) Expressive Arts Grants: NMAI's Expressive Arts program awards grants of up to $10,000 to support the creation and presentation of new works through the collaboration of two or more Native artists. Awards will specifically support the creation of new works for public performance that may include, but is not limited to, music, dance, spoken word, electronic media, costume design, mask making, set design, performance art, photography, painting, and other forms of expressive culture. The award is open to all indigenous peoples who hold citizenship in the Americas. Deadline: January 15, 2010. Complete program information is available at the National Museum of the American Indian Web site.


(ALL) Black Metropolis Research Fellowships: The Black Metropolis Research Consortium is accepting applications for two fellowship programs: One-or two-month fellowships plus a stipend of up to $3,000 will be offered to scholars, artists, educators, writers, and researchers for studies relating to African-American and African diasporic culture, history, and politics. http://foundationcenter.org/pnd/rfp/rfp_item.jhtml?id=272300024. Deadline: January 11, 2010.

(DANCERS) NEFA Production Grant: The New England Foundation for the Arts invites dance artists and companies to apply for a Production Grant for 2010. NEFA grants are highly competitive and award approximately 20 grants each year. The grants range from $25,000 to $40,000. Production grants will also receive touring support for the season following their works creation. The deadline for the first round for the grant process is March 2, 2010.

It is essential that the project applying for production grants engage audiences, explore collaborations within or across disciplines and involve creative and dynamic partnerships with one or more U.S. presenter partners. Touring grants also available. Visit the website for more information. Complete information can be found here: http://nefa.org/grants_services/production_grants.

(WRITERS & PHOTOGRAPHERS) Dorothea Lange-Paul Taylor Documentary Prize: The year 2010 marks the twentieth anniversary of the Dorothea Lange–Paul Taylor documentary prize, a $20,000 award given annually by the Center for Documentary Studies. The Lange-Taylor Prize is offered to a writer and a photographer in the early stages of a documentary project. By encouraging such collaborative efforts, the Center for Documentary Studies supports the documentary process in which writers and photographers work together to record the human story. For more information, go to: http://www-cds.aas.duke.edu/l-t/index.html. Deadline: January, 31, 2010.

(ALL) Puffin Foundation Grants: The Puffin foundation is accepting grant proposals from emerging artists in the fields of art, music, photography, theater, and video. For more information, go to: http://www.puffinfoundation.org/grants/prospectiveapplicant.html. Deadline is December 15, 2009. This grant does not provide funding for the writing of books, nor does it provide for travel.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

UPDATE ON THE RICHARD FLORSHEIM ART FUND FOR ARTISTS OVER SIXTY

Good morning all...
A couple of you have recently written me asking about the Richard Florsheim Art Fund for artists over sixty and one or two other foundations that seem to have disappeared into some netherworld. I can't keep up with everything that happens in these changing times, however, I think it would behoove me to start doing periodic updates regarding foundations that have closed down or have merged with other ones so as to keep afloat, which is what I found out happened to the Florsheim Fund. It merged with the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation and there's an article on that website explaining the merger. That said, I found nothing at all on their site about how to apply for a grant so I wrote them this morning and I'll let you know what they say if and when I hear back from them. You can find out more about the merger and the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation here.

In the meantime, if any of you have clicked on my links and found that a place doesn't exist anymore or has suspended their program, please let me know! I want to keep everyone as up-to-date as possible. I have a few new opportunities to post in another note....so check that out when it appears a little bit later.

Cheers!
Mira

Monday, November 2, 2009

INTERVIEW WITH MIRA TODAY

Good morning, Gentle Readers,
Recently, I was interviewed by writer Alexis Grant, who keeps a blog called Aspiring Author. Alexis is a journalist, travel writer and is currently writing her first book, a travel memoir. Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised this morning to find that the interview is up and you can now view it online! The link is here. I talk a little about how I find grants and residencies for you but I also talk a bit about how I made my living over the years as well as my upcoming book, The Memory Palace. I hope you check out Alexis Grant's site and my interview. And I highly suggest you spend a little time perusing her site and checking out some of the other articles she has on writing. She is one of the people you'll be reading more about when I start posting interviews. (Coming soon!).

Keep working hard....as Virginia Woolf once said (and I hope I'm getting it right), "To be carried on passively is unthinkable."
Cheers,
Mira

Welcome to Mira's List

This blog provides information on upcoming grants, fellowships and residencies for artists, writers, composers, and media artists. It is for serious professionals only, from emerging to mid-career to established. I also publish information for graduate students from time to time. However, I do not publish information on exhibition or publishing opportunities, nor do I advertise artist retreats and workshops that charge money. At least that is my current policy. For more info on where to exhibit or publish, please see my links section which I try to periodically update. I sift through hundreds of search engines and websites to find opportunities for YOU dear artist. In return, I ask you to pass the information along to those who need it. Also, since this is a free blog, I don't always have the time to weed carefully through everything. If you find a grant or website or residency that is not up-to-date, is dodgy in some way, or is no longer in existence, please let me know! Also, if you stay somewhere at one of the residencies I suggest and have a good experience, I want that feedback too. Please check my FAQs at the top right side bar if you have questions before starting your search. Best wishes and happy hunting!